Overview

Comprehensive Description

Biology

Shoals in clear, flowing or standing, open water. Appears to co-exist with the tigerfish Hydrocynus forskalii in open water although it is heavily preyed upon by that predator, particularly those shoals of tigerfish ranging up to 45 cm in length (Ref. 13337). Omnivorous, often feeding from surface waters on winged insects. Also takes insect larvae, crustaceans and eggs and fry of other fish (Ref. 13337). Mature after a year. A partial spawner of moderate fecundity, with usually fewer than 700 eggs per female. Shoals migrate upstream after first summer rains; breeds throughout the summer months. Used as forage fish and as bait for tigerfish and pike (Ref. 7248).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Distribution

Range Description

This is a widespread species, found from Sudan to South Africa, and westerly as far as east Nigeria.

Central Africa: Micralestes acutidens is known from throughout the Congo River basin, including Lakes Kariba and Tanganyika. In Lower Guinea it is found in the Cross and Sanaga Rivers.

Eastern Africa: It is present in the Lower Shire (Tweddle and Willoughby 1979) and Rovuma Rivers.

Northern Africa: It used in to be found and caught from Luxor and Aswan in Egyptian Nile, but is now extirpated from the region.

Northeast Africa: This species is present in the Ghazal el Jebel systems, White Nile.

Southern Africa: It is known from Congo and Zambezi systems, including the Cunene and Okavango, and east coast rivers south to the Phongolo (Skelton 2001). This species is the only characin found in the northern tributaries of the upper Zambezi system in Zambia (Tweddle et al. 2004).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Africa: Nile, Niger, Chad, Congo, Zambezi, Limpopo, Omo, Ubanghi, Lake Kariba, Kafue, Benin, Rovuma, Transvaal, Cameroon, Lake Upemba, Lualaba, Uelé, Benue. Also known from the Cunene and Okavango systems (Ref. 7248). Also found in Lake Volta, Ghana (Ref. 3036) and Lake Kariba (Ref. 27602).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Africa.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© FishWise Professional

Source: FishWise Professional

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Morphology

Dorsal spines (total): 2; Dorsal soft rays (total): 8 - 9; Analspines: 3; Analsoft rays: 14 - 16
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Size

Maximum size: 90 mm SL
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© FishWise Professional

Source: FishWise Professional

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Max. size

9.0 cm SL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 4967)); max. published weight: 2.0 g (Ref. 3799); max. reported age: 3 years (Ref. 7248)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Diagnostic Description

Body height 3-3.5 times in standard length (Ref. 42032). Head length 3.6-4.2 times in standard length (Ref. 42032). Cuspid number: external row of upper jaw 3-5, internal row of upper jaw 7-12, external row of lower jaw 9-11, internal row of lower jaw 2-4 (Ref. 42032). Black mediolateral band starting behind operculum quickly enlarges and continues to the origin of the caudal (Ref. 42032). Fins greyish, with dorsal fin generally blackish at its extremity (Ref. 42032).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

BMNH 1861.3.10: 3-4, syntype, 1; AMNH 227634, 1; AMNH 239475, 5, 2 C&S;

License not applicable

Melanie L. J. Stiassny

Source: Plazi.org

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Micralestes acutidens is a pelagic, potamodromous species. It forms shoals in clear, flowing or standing, open water. Common in water with fringing vegetation. It appears to co-exist with the tigerfish Hydrocynus forskalii in open water although it is heavily preyed upon by that predator, particularly those shoals of tigerfish ranging up to 45 cm in length (Bell-Cross and Minshull 1988). Omnivorous, often feeding from surface waters on winged insects. Also takes insect larvae, crustaceans and eggs and fry of other fish (Bell-Cross and Minshull 1988). They mature after a year. A partial spawner of moderate fecundity, with usually fewer than 700 eggs per female. Shoals migrate upstream after first summer rains; breeds throughout the summer months. Used as forage fish and as bait for tigerfish and pike (Skelton 1993).

Systems
  • Freshwater
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Environment

pelagic; potamodromous (Ref. 51243); freshwater; pH range: 6.2 - 8.0; dH range: 25
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Migration

Potamodromous. Migrating within streams, migratory in rivers, e.g. Saliminus, Moxostoma, Labeo. Migrations should be cyclical and predictable and cover more than 100 km.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Trophic Strategy

Frequency of occurrence in Caprivi: abundant in sandy streams, common on rocky streams, frequently in standing deep water, occasionally in shallow swamps (Ref. 037065). Feeds on detritus, plants and insects (Ref. 6160).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Micralestes acutidens

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 4
Specimens with Barcodes: 17
Species With Barcodes: 1
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Barcode data: Micralestes acutidens

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


No available public DNA sequences.

Download FASTA File
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2010

Assessor/s
Azeroual, A., Bills, R., Cambray, J., Entsua-Mensah, M., Hanssens, M., Lalèyè, P., Marshall, B. & Moelants, T.

Reviewer/s
Snoeks, J., Tweddle, D., Getahun, A., Lalèyè, P., Paugy, D., Zaiss, R., Fishar, M.R.A & Brooks, E.

Contributor/s

Justification
This species has a wide distribution, with no known major widespread threats. It is therefore listed as Least Concern. It has also been assessed regionally as Least Concern for central, eastern, north eastern and southern Africa. The species used to be known (and caught) from Luxor and Aswan region of Egypt in the Nile. The impacts of the Aswan High Dam and pollution are thought to have caused this extirpation, and it is now assessed as Regionally Extinct within north Africa. There is no immigration of individuals from outside the region (above the High Dam).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Population

Population
Limited information. Numerous in suitable habitats.

Population Trend
Unknown
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Threats

Major Threats
This species is threatened by overfishing with small meshed gears.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Least Concern (LC)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
The species has some protection in reserves such as Kafue National Park. More research is needed into this species taxonomy, and biology and ecology, as well as monitoring of population trends.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Importance

fisheries: of no interest; aquarium: commercial; bait: usually
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!