Comprehensive Description

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[[ Nanochromis Pellegrin ZBK ]]

The genus Nanochromis ZBK was originally erected by Pellegrin (1904) for Nanochromis nudiceps (Boulenger, 1899) , with the main character of an extremely elevated upper lateral line. In his revision of the genus Pelmatochromis , Thys van den Audenaerde (1968) suggested the inclusion of Nanochromis ZBK as a subgenus of Pelmatochromis sensu lato, for species within the genus with 12 scale rows around the caudal peduncle. Nanochromis ZBK was resurrected as a genus by Trewavas (1973, 1974). Roberts & Stewart (1976) characterized Nanochromis ZBK sensu stricto as having one half or more of the upper lateral line adjacent to the base of the dorsal fin, rather than separated from it by one or more rows of scales without tubules, and added four new species. Greenwood (1987) recognized two groups within the genus: a smaller group with the two species N. dimidatus and N. squamiceps , characterised by having about less than the half pored scales of the upper lateral-line contiguous with the dorsal-fin base, a completely scaled belly and nape, a partially scaled chest and cheek, and the presence of a single, reduced and comma-shaped supraneural bone. The second group contains all remaining species, characterised by the posterior half, or slightly more, of the upper lateral line contiguous with the dorsal-fin base, a naked nape, cheek and belly, and by the absence of a supraneural bone in most individuals.

In 1996 the German aquarist Rainer Sawatzky collected a Nanochromis ZBK in Congo (Brazzaville) near the city of Makoua which corresponded well to some other material from Congo (Brazzaville) and Gabon, deposited in MRAC and MNHN as well as with specimens presented in aquarist literature and which clearly was an undescribed species of the dimidiatus-group . It is the aim of this paper to describe this new species.


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