Comprehensive Description

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[[ Genus Hemipsilichthys ZBK ]]

Hemipsilichthys Eigenmann and Eigenmann ZBK , 1889 currently includes 18 species distributed chiefly in the coastal basins of southern and southeastern Brazil. One species is known from the Amazon. Coastal rivers of southern Brazil, namely the rivers of Santa Catarina State, represent the richest area of Hemipsilichthys ZBK species. The upper Uruguay River in Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina States is inhabited by three species, H. vestigipinnis Pereira and Reis ZBK , 1992, H. eurycephalus Pereira and Reis ZBK , 2002, and H. hystrix Pereira and Reis ZBK , 2002. In addition, a small area of endemism composed of the coastal rivers Maquiné , Três Forquilhas, Mampituba and Araranguá (Reis and Schaefer 1998; Reis and Cardoso 2001), is inhabited by three other species, H. nudulus Reis and Pereira ZBK , 1999, H. hypselurus Pereira and Reis ZBK , 2002, and H. stomias Pereira and Reis ZBK , 2002. Finally, remaining coastal rivers of Santa Catarina State north of the Araranguá River basin are occupied by four additional species, H. calmoni (Steindachner , 1907), H. steindachneri Miranda Ribeiro ZBK , 1918, H. splendens Bizerril ZBK , 1995, and H. azygolechis Pereira and Reis ZBK , 2002. North of the above area is a geographic gap for Hemipsilichthys ZBK , and the Paraíba do Sul River is the next area where species belonging to this genus are found: H. gobio ( Luetken , 1874) and H. papillatus Pereira et al. ZBK , 2000. Coastal rivers in Rio de Janeiro State, the Macaé and Macacu Rivers, are inhabited by H. garbei Ihering ZBK , 1911. Still further north, three species of Hemipsilichthys ZBK are found in the upper São Francisco River and nearby coastal rivers of Bahia: H. bahianus (Gosline , 1947), H. stephanus Oliveira and Oyakawa ZBK , 1999, and H. mutuca Oliveira and Oyakawa ZBK , 1999, and in the tributaries of the upper Negro River in the Amazon, H. regani Giltay ZBK , 1936. Type locality and distribution of H. cerosus Miranda Ribeiro ZBK , 1951 are not known.

Pereira and Reis (2002) recently produced a revision of Hemipsilichthys ZBK and Isbrueckerichthys Derijst ZBK , 1996, describing five new species of the former and redescribing all previously known species. Of the 18 known species, 11 were described during the last ten years and additional undescribed species await formal description. During a survey of coastal rivers on southeastern Brazil one of these undescribed species was detected in the upper Perequê-Açu River by the two first authors. Independently, the two last authors also found the same new species during ecological studies in coastal rivers of southeastern Rio de Janeiro State.


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