Checklist of freshwater fishes collected from Ernakulam District, Kerala, India
K.S. Jameela Beevi 1 & A. Ramachandran 2
1 Department of Zoology, Maharaja’s College, Ernakulam, Cochin, Kerala 682011, India
2 School of Industrial Fisheries, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Cochin, Kerala 682016, India
Aquarium fishes have gained much attention in recent years. Kerala has immense developmental potential in aquarium fishery. Many ichthyological surveys are going on to study the fish fauna of our rivers. The NBSAP (2002) has reported the presence of 159 freshwater fishes in Kerala. Though district wise and river wise diversity studies are going on in Kerala, not much has been recorded on the fresh water fishes in Ernakulam District, Kerala. With this paucity in mind, an attempt has been made to document the freshwater fishes in the rivers of Ernakulam District, Kerala. The systematics of the collected fishes was also studied.
Eleven sampling stations were selected, viz, Angadikkadavu (Station-I) and Chalakkudythode (Station-II) in Chalakkudy River; Ooramana in Muvattupuzha (Station-III), Peruvamuzhy (Station-IV), Vellore near Piravom (Station-V) and Thengode near Idachira, Kakkanad (Station-VI) in Muvattupuzha River; Aluva (Station-VII), Madathumoola near Desom (Station-VIII), Parambepalam (Station-IX), Kalady (Station-X) and Panieli (Station-XI) in Periyar. The streams and channels opening to the various centres were also included for collecting samples.
Monthly collections were made for a period of two years from January 2000 to December 2001. Fishes were collected using cast and scoop nets.
Standard methods (Nelson 1984; Talwar & Jhingran 1991; Jayaram 1999) were used for the classification and identification of fishes. The identification was further confirmed with the Zoological Survey of India.
The study indicates that the rivers in Ernakulam are rich in fish diversity. 69 species were collected during the study. Based on their availability and abundance in the collection, they were classified in to abundant species (****), common species (***), rare species (**), very rare species (*) and their absence by “0”. There were 17 abundant species, 13 common species, 31 rare species and nine very rare species in the study. The systematic positions of the fishes collected during the study are shown in Table: 1. Of the collected fishes, 35 species have high demand in the domestic and international ornamental fish market. These fishes are marked with an asterisk mark in their serial numbers.
Nelson, J.S. (1984). Fishes of the World. John Wiley and Sons, New York, 523pp.
Talwar P.K. & A.G. Jhingran (1991). Inland Fishes of India and Adjacent Countries Vol.1 and 2, Oxford and IBH publishing Co. Pvt. Ltd, New Delhi, 1158pp.
Jayaram, K.C. (1999). The Fresh Water Fishes of the Indian Region. Narendra Publishing House, Delhi, 551pp.
NBSAP (2002). Executive Summaries of National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plans (Ecoregions, States, Sub states, sites, and themes and sub thematic Reviews). December, 2002: 94-04.