Central Africa: It is found in the headwaters of the Lualaba and Sankuru Rivers in DRC.
Eastern Africa: This species is found in the Lake Victoria basin, Athi and Tana River systems, northern and southern Ewaso Nyiro basins, This species is known from upper Pangani system, Amboseli swamps, Lake Naivasha and affluents (Seegers et al. 2003). Also reported from the affluent streams and rivers to Lake Tanganyika, including the Malagarasi River, and the Middle Akagera system. Widespread in Lake Malawi and its affluents, the Shire River and Lakes Chiuta and Chilwa.
Northeast Africa: This species occurs in the Awash basin and rift lakes, Ethiopia
Southern Africa: Widespread in east coastal rivers from East Africa south to KwaZulu-Natal and from southern Congo tributaries and the Quanza in Angola to the Orange (Skelton 2001).
Catalog Number: USNM 86625
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Locality: Thika R. E. Africa 3000 Ft., Africa
Zambezi River Benthopelagic Habitat
This taxon is one of a number of benthopelagic species in the Zambezi River system of southern Africa. Benthopelagic river fish are found near the bottom of the water column, feeding on benthos and zooplankton
Nutrient levels in the Zambezi River are relatively low, especially in the upper Zambezi; in that reach, above Victoria Falls, most of the catchment drains Kalahari sands, whose nutrient levels are inherently low due to their aeolian formation; moreover, agricultural fertilizer addition throughout the Zambezi watershed is low, due to the shortage of capital available to farmers of this region.
Nitrate levels (as nitrogen) in the upper Zambezi are typically in the range of .01 to .03 milligrams per liter. Correspondingly electrical conductivity of the upper Zambezi is on the order of 75 micro-S per centimeter, due to the paucity of ion content. From the Luangwa River downstream nitrate levels elevate to .10 to .18 milligrams per liter, and electrical conductivity rises to a range of two to four times the upper Zambezi levels. Not surprisingly, pH, calcium ion concentration, bicarbonate and electrical conductivity are all higher in portions of the catchment where limestone soils predominate compared to granite.
There are a total of 190 known fish species present in the Zambezi River, including eel and shark taxa. The largest native benthopelagic fish in the Zambezi are the 170 cm North African catfish (Clarias gariepinus), the 146 cm common carp (Cyprinus carpio carpio), the 150 cm Indo-Pacific tarpon (Megalops cyprinoides) and the introduced 120 cm rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss).
Kunene River Benthopelagic Habitat
This taxon is one of a number of benthopelagic species in the Kunene River system. Benthopelagic river fish are found near the bottom of the water column, feeding on benthos and zooplankton
The Kunene River rises in the central highlands of Angola, and thence flows southward to form a major element of the border between Namibia and Angola before the final discharge is to the Atlantic Ocean in the vicinity of the Angola-Benguela Front. The geometry of the Kunene riparian zone is distinctly narrow, with rugged arid landscapes persisting on both sides of the river over long distances, and a virtual lack of any extensive floodplains.
There is a relatively high rate of endemism of aquatic biota in the Kunene. Proposed expansion of dams on the Kunene poses a threat to biodiversity in the river, especially regarding proposals at Epupa Falls. However, a greater threat to the Kunene is a plan by Angola to greatly expand withdrawal of water from the river to expand irrigated agriculture by 600,000 hectares; not only will this action significantly diminish downriver flow rates, but also add considerable nitrate, herbicide and pesticide substances to the river.
The catchment area of the Kunene Basin is approximately 106,560 square kilometres (41,143 square miles) in area, of which 14 100 km² (13%) lies within Namibian territory. Its mean annual discharge is 174 cubic meters per second (6145 cubic feet per second) at its mouth on the Atlantic. Water quality of the Kunene River is relatively high, since the human population density and agricultural intensity is relatively low, including a conspicuous absence of overgrazing. However, bacteria and other microbial pathogens pose a material threat to Kunene water quality, due to the fact that only a small fraction of the domestic wastewater in Angola is treated;
Regarding freshwater bivalves, the central reaches of the Kunene manifest particularly high endemism, similar to parts of the Okavango, Chobe, Upper Zambezi and Etosha Pan basins. The bivalve Etheria elliptica, which also occurs in the Upper Zambezi, is a freshwater mussel in the family Etheriidae, known from a limited extent of the central Kunene River in Angola. It is threatened by proposed dam construction on the Kunene.
There are several endemic benthopelagic fishes in the Kunene River: the eight centimeter (cm) long Kunene dwarf happy (Orthochromis machadoi); the 14 cm benthopelagic Namib happy (Thoracochromis buysi); and the seven cm benthopelagic Kunene kneria (Kneria maydelli).
Habitat and Ecology
Known prey organisms
Based on studies in:
Africa, Crocodile Creek, Lake Nyasa (Lake or pond)
This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
- G. Fryer, 1957. The trophic interrelationships and ecology of some littoral communities of Lake Nyasa with special reference to the fishes, and a discussion of the evolution of a group of rock-frequenting Cichlidae. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 132:153-281, f
- G. Fryer, The trophic interrelationships and ecology of some littoral communities of Lake Nyasa, Proc. London Zool. Soc. 132:153-229, from p. 219 (1959).
Diseases and Parasites
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Statistics of barcoding coverage: Barbus paludinosus
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 50
Species With Barcodes: 1
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
- 2006Least Concern(IUCN 2006)
- 2006Least Concern
Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems
The Straightfin Barb (Barbus paludinosus) is a species of ray-finned fish in the Cyprinidae family. B. pleurogramma is sometimes included here, but while it is certainly extremely closely related, it appears to be a distinct cryptic species.
- Ntakimazi, G., Twongo, T.K. & Kazambe, J. 2005. Barbus paludinosus. 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Downloaded on 19 July 2007.
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