On May 25, 2020, Professor Mathews Plamoottil, head of the Department of Zoology at the BJM Government College, Chavara (Kerala), has detected a new species of silver colored small freshwater fish “Puntius sanctus” of the Cyprinidae family in Velankanni ,Tamil Nadu(TN).
i.About Puntius sanctus:
- This fish is very small and Grows to a length of 7 cm. Although this fish found in Kerala and Tamil Nadu shows almost similarity, this fish found in Velankanni differs from the rest of the species.
- Its physical features include a ‘protractible mouth’, a pair of ‘maxillary barbels’ (a sensory organ near the mouth), 24-25 lateral line titrations and 10 pre-dorsal scales.
ii.About Puntius genus: The Puntius species is locally known as ‘Paral’ in Kerala and ‘Kende’ in Tamil Nadu.
iii.The novel fish now has been conserved in the Zoological Survey of India at Pune, Maharashtra & registered with Zoo Bank of the International Commission of Zoological Nomenclature, the official authority for naming animals.
iv.The research, funded by the Science and Engineering Research Board of the Department of Science and Technology, has published in the Journal ‘Bioscience Research’.