Overview

Distribution

Range Description

Recorded from Lake Nawampasa.
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Range Description

Migori River (endemic to Lake Victoria drainage).
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Range Description

This species is endemic to Lake Victoria. It has been recorded in surveys carried out in Tanzania.
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Range Description

Introduced to Lake Chala (Pangani drainage). Probably originates from Lake Bahati, Tanzania.
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Range Description

This species is known from three islands scattered across south eastern lake Victoria: Chamagati (Sengerema Region ), Makobe (south-western Speke Gulf) and Nansio (Ukerewe). At each of these islands, it occurs with moderate abundance. It is unclear why it is absent from many other localities with similar habitats (Seehausen et al. 1998).
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Range Description

Endemic to the Amboseli swamps, Kenya.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Systems
  • Freshwater
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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Migori River.

Systems
  • Freshwater
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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
The species has been found over off shore mud substrate and mud substrate in the sub-littoral zone. The species is a peadophage (piscivores sensu lato).

Systems
  • Freshwater
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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Unknown.

Systems
  • Freshwater
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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
The species is restricted to rocky substrates in the littoral zone. It lives and forages exclusively on the surface of the rocky substrate, usually exposed to wave action, and has never been observed or collected in crevices, and rarely in sheltered embayment (Seehausen et al. 1998). This species is an insectivore. Its diet consists of benthic invertebrates and periphyton.

Systems
  • Freshwater
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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Swamps. Little other information was available.

Systems
  • Freshwater
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Associations

Known prey organisms

Haplochromis (Haplochromis sp.) preys on:
Actinopterygii

Based on studies in:
Malawi, Lake Nyasa (Lake or pond)

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
  • G. Fryer, The trophic interrelationships and ecology of some littoral communities of Lake Nyasa, Proc. London Zool. Soc. 132:153-281, from p. 218 (1959).
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD) Stats
Specimen Records:69
Specimens with Sequences:56
Specimens with Barcodes:56
Species:7
Species With Barcodes:5
Public Records:16
Public Species:4
Public BINs:4
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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Haplochromis sp.

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 18
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Barcode data

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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
CR
Critically Endangered

Red List Criteria
A1acde, B1+2ce

Version
2.3

Year Assessed
1996
  • Needs updating

Assessor/s
Kaufman, L.

Reviewer/s

Contributor/s
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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
DD
Data Deficient

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2004

Assessor/s
Hanssens, M.

Reviewer/s
Snoeks, J. (Freshwater Fish Red List Authority) & Darwall, W. (Freshwater Biodiversity Assessment Programme)

Contributor/s

Justification
This taxon occurs in a single locality, the Migori river of the Lake Victoria drainage. It's taxonomic status remains uncertain so it is assessed as Data Deficient.
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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
CR
Critically Endangered

Red List Criteria
C2a(ii)

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2010

Assessor/s
Witte, F., de Zeeuw, M.P. & Brooks, E.

Reviewer/s
Darwall, W. & Smith, K.

Contributor/s

Justification
The population density was known in the Northern part of the Mwanza Gulf, with a massive decline in the 1980s due to the introduction of the Nile Perch (Lates niloticus). The Nile Perch density has declined since 1990s. Whilst many Haplochromis species suffered dramatic population crashes, many have shown signs of recovery in the last few years, however this species has not been seen since 1985 despite repeated surveys within its known range. If it is still present it is likely to be extremely rare with very few individuals, but it may now be Extinct.
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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
DD
Data Deficient

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2004

Assessor/s
Hanssens, M.

Reviewer/s
Snoeks, J. (Freshwater Fish Red List Authority) & Darwall, W. (Freshwater Biodiversity Assessment Programme)

Contributor/s

Justification
Lack of information for the original population in Lake Babati
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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
VU
Vulnerable

Red List Criteria
D2

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2010

Assessor/s
Witte, F., de Zeeuw, M.P. & Brooks, E.

Reviewer/s
Darwall, W. & Smith, K.

Contributor/s

Justification
The population density of this species was known in the past. The current population density is not known but it does still occur in Lake Victoria. The threat which reduced the population of many Haplochromis species was the introduction of the Nile Perch (Lates niloticus) to Lake Victoria. However the biggest current threat to the species is increased hybridisation as a result of decreased water transparency. It is not known to what extent this is affecting different areas of the lake, but its current distribution is likely restricted to only a few locations, and it is therefore assessed as Vulnerable.
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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
CR
Critically Endangered

Red List Criteria
B1ab(i,ii,iii)

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2004

Assessor/s
Hanssens, M.

Reviewer/s
Snoeks, J. (Freshwater Fish Red List Authority) & Darwall, W. (Freshwater Biodiversity Assessment Programme)

Contributor/s

Justification
Only occurs in the Amboseli swamps with an estimated extent of occurrence of about 25 km². Given the significant decline in the lake level and in extent of occurrence the species qualifies as Critically Endangered.
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Population

Population
Unknown.

Population Trend
Unknown
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Population

Population
This species has declined in numbers dramatically since 1980. Frequency of occurrence data per 10 min trawling in Mwanza Gulf (based on the value at the station with the highest frequency, with 10-28 catches, Witte et al. 1992) show a decrease from 21% in 1979-82, to 0% in 1987/88, 1993/95 and 2006/08. Frequency of daily occurrence in large trawl shots in northern Mwanza Gulf (based on 40-47 catches from 1977/78, and 69 from 1987) showed a decrease from 62% in 1978 to 0% in 1987, and 0% for 1999-2008.

Population Trend
Decreasing
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Population

Population
Unknown.

Population Trend
Unknown
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Population

Population
No information available.

Population Trend
Unknown
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Population

Population
Unknown.

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
Unknown.
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Major Threats
The main threat to this species is predation by Nile Perch (a potentially reversible threat). It is also potentially threatened by hybridization due to decreased water transparency (on account of eutrophication and erosion leading to increased sedimentation and runoff) interfering with mate recognition visual cues (Mrosso et al. 2003).
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Major Threats
Unknown.
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Major Threats
The main threat to this species is hybridization due to decreased water transparency (on account of eutrophication and erosion leading to increased sedimentation and runoff) interfering with mate recognition visual cues (Mrosso et al. 2003). An additional threat is capture as bait for long line fishery.
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Major Threats
Loss of habitat due to lowered water levels and restricted range.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Unknown.
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Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
This species has not been reported since the 1980s. More studies are needed to establish if it is still extant.
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Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Unknown.
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Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
None known, but the population trend of this species should continue to be monitored.
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Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Its distribution is partly included within the Amboseli National Park.
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Wikipedia

Haplochromis sp. 'small obesoid'


Haplochromis sp. nov. 'small obesoid' is a species of fish in the Cichlidae family. It is endemic to Uganda.

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Haplochromis sp. 'backflash cryptodon'


Haplochromis sp. nov. 'backflash cryptodon' is a species of fish in the Cichlidae family. It is endemic to Uganda.

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Haplochromis sp. 'ruby'


Haplochromis sp. nov. 'ruby' is a species of fish in the Cichlidae family. It is endemic to Uganda.

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Haplochromis sp. 'Migori'

Haplochromis sp. nov. 'Migori' is a species of fish in the Cichlidae family. It is endemic to Kenya. Its natural habitat is rivers.

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Haplochromis sp. 'Amboseli'

Haplochromis sp. nov. 'Amboseli' is a species of fish in the Cichlidae family. It is endemic to Kenya. Its natural habitat is swamps. It is threatened by habitat loss.

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Haplochromis

Haplochromis is a ray-finned fish genus in the family Cichlidae. It has been used as the default "wastebin taxon" for Pseudocrenilabrinae cichlids of the East African Rift, and as such became the "largest" fish "genus". Many of these cichlids are popular aquarium fishes; like similar Haplochromini they are known as "haplos", "happies" or "haps" among aquarium enthusiasts.[1]

The genus was established by F.M. Hilgendorf in 1888. It was originally conceived as a subgenus of A.C.L.G. Günther's "Chromis", at that time an even larger "wastebin genus" for Pseudocrenilabrinae cichlids. The type species of Hilgendorf was H. obliquidens. "Chromis" of Günther turned out to be a junior homonym of G. Cuvier's ocean fish genus Chromis, established in 1814 already, and was abolished. As the years went by, other genera of (mostly) Haplochromini were lumped with and split again from Haplochromis, and the final delimitation of the clade around H. obliquidens is not yet done.

Extinction crisis in Lake Victoria[edit]

The introduction of Nile perch (Lates niloticus) to Lake Victoria after 1954 severely upset the lake's ecosystem. By the late 1970s, the perch's population was approaching carrying capacity, and the smaller cichlids were fair game for the huge carnivorous Lates, the Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), an adaptable generalist, was also introduced and competed with the often specialized endemic cichlids of the lake for food and other resources. When the Nile perch stocks finally declined again in the late 1980s, an estimated 200 Haplochromini species (mostly Haplochromis) may have become extinct – many of these had only been scientifically described a few years before their demise, and additional ones were only known or suspected to exist, but never properly studied or described.[2]

While the stocks of those species that survived are in many cases recovering, the lake ecosystem has changed irrevocably. The entire trophic web has been observed to be upset. But still, evolution runs its course: those Lake Victoria Haplochromis species that still exist are in many cases adapting to new food sources, and in time, speciation is likely to set in and produce a new adaptive radiation of these fishes. Until then, however, the ecological balance of the lake is still on the brink, and many of the cichlids that survived the peak population of Lates are still critically endangered and close to extinction.[3]

Systematics and taxonomy[edit]

Haplochromis is the type genus of the tribe Haplochromini. Most of the tribe's members were at one time or another included in the present genus, but in many cases this was only temporary. Around the year 1900, as well 100 years later, the trend was to split up the genus; especially in the mid-20th century, on the other hand, most authors lumped any and all Haplochromini that were not conspicuously distinct in the type genus.[4]

While a number of African Rift Valley ciclids are certainly very close relatives of H. obliquidens, the type species of the present genus, it is not very clear where to draw the boundary of Haplochromis with regard to its relatives. Still, several genera are now recognized as distinct by many authors and scientific databases, such as FishBase (see below); in particular the Haplochromini from Lake Tanganyika and Lake Malawi are usually removed form Haplochromis. The genus delimitation in the entire tribe remains badly resolved, however, and further changes in taxonomy are likely in the future. In particular, between Haplochromis, Astatotilapia and Thoracochromis, species have been moved to and fro over the years. The habit of Pseudocrenilabrinae to hybridize is hampering molecular phylogenetic studies based on mtDNA alone, while trophic morphs of a single species may appear to be distinct "species" if they are not phylogenetically studied. Several proposed genera are again included in Haplochromis at present, but it cannot be ruled out that some of these will eventually be recognized as valid again.[5]

Species[edit]

There are currently 229 recognized species in this genus:

Undescribed species[edit]

These populations are typically referred to by the names they have in the aquarium fish trade. A number of them are likely to represent undescribed distinct species; others might just be subspecies or color morphs. Whether they all belong in Haplochromis is, of course, doubtful. Some of these populations are:

Formerly in Haplochromis[edit]

Among other genera of Haplochromini that were formerly included here, many are small or monotypic. The distinctness of these is highly doubtful, as they may just be distinct lineages of Haplochromis or other haplochromines. That nonwithstanding, Haplochromini genera to which some former "Haplochromis" have been removed are in particular:[9]

Some other Pseudocrenilabrinae were also – mainly by early authors – included in Haplochromis, though they are not members of its tribe. These are:[4]

Synonyms of Haplochromis[edit]

With all the taxonomic and systematic confusion affecting Haplochromis and its allies, it is hardly surprising that the genus has a large number of junior synonyms. Most referred to small or monotypic genera that were once considered distinct, but are now included in Haplochromis again, if only to wait for a major review of their status. Synonyms are:

and sometimes other genera listed above are also synonymized.

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Linke & Staeck (1994)
  2. ^ Linke & Staeck (1994), Kishe-Machumu et al. (2008), IUCN (2009)
  3. ^ Kishe-Machumu et al. (2008), IUCN (2009)
  4. ^ a b FishBase [2009b]
  5. ^ Nagl et al. (2001), FishBase [2009b]
  6. ^ a b c d e f g de Zeeuw; Mietes, Niemantsverdriet, ter Huurne & Witte (2010). "Seven new species of detritivorous and phytoplanktivorous haplochromines from Lake Victoria". Zoologische Medelingen Leiden 84: 201–250. 
  7. ^ Wamuini Lunkayilakio; Vreven (2010). "Haplochromis’ snoeksi, a new species from the Inkisi River basin, Lower Congo (Perciformes: Cichlidae)". Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters 21 (3): 279–287. 
  8. ^ Schedel, F. D. B., Friel, J. P. & Schliewen, U. K. (2014): Haplochromis vanheusdeni, a new haplochromine cichlid species from the Great Ruaha River drainage, Rufiji basin, Tanzania (Teleostei, Perciformes, Cichlidae). Spixiana, 37 (1): 135-149.
  9. ^ Linke & Staeck (1994), FishBase [2009b]

References[edit]

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Haplochromis sp. 'Chala'

Haplochromis sp. nov. 'Chala' is a species of fish in the Cichlidae family. It is found in Kenya and Tanzania. Its natural habitat is freshwater lakes.

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