Petrocephalus microphthalmus is distinguished from all other Petrocephalus species in Central Africa by the following combination of characteristics: short dorsal fin with only 18 or fewer branched rays, long anal fin with 23-27 branched rays, eye small (HL/ED=4,1-4,8), mouth moderately wide, only 9-11 teeth in the upper jaw, 14-20 teeth in the lower jaw, no more than 10 scales between the anterior base of the anal fin and the lateral line (Ref. 52344, 85331). Absence of black pigment patches, except for a characteristic black blotch on the anterior dorsal fin rays near the origin of this fin; body silvery/purplish, iridescent (Ref. 85331).
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