I have ever been fascinated with the host of small South American freshwater fishes, and as an amateur aquarist kept several fish tanks in home. I commenced scientific studies of freshwater Neotropical fishes as an undergraduate student at the Museum of Zoology at the Universidade Estadual de Londrina in Brazil, where I completed my BSc and MS degrees on the taxonomy and morphology of various Neotropical freshwater fishes including armored catfishes, cichlids and characins. For my PhD studies in the Laboratory of Vertebrate Systematics at Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, I focused my research on the taxonomy and evolutionary history of the Cheirodontinae, a subfamily of small-sized tetras in the family Characidae widespread through the Neotropics.
Currently I am a postdoctoral fellow in the Vertebrate Zoology Department at the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, working on a revisionary and phylogenetic study of African Characiformes. I am also a research collaborator in the Laboratory of Ichthyology at the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul; participating on projects involving the taxonomy and phylogeny of cheirodontines and characids. My main research interest centers on the taxonomy, comparative anatomy and evolutionary history of multiple groups of Neotropical freshwater fishes in order to understand the processes that contributed to the remarkable diversity of this fish fauna, with a special focus on the Characidae (Characiformes), one of the largest families in that fauna.
As a Rubenstein Fellow I will develop high-quality biological information for nearly 400 species of characids (subfamilies Tetragonopterinae and Cheirodontinae) for EOL. This will incorporate up-to-date pertinent scientific information on each species so as to make it readily available and accessible to broader audiences. By facilitating species identification and the characterization of their habitats, this information will inform conservation plans, the identification of high priority and endemic areas, and encourage ichthyological research and collaboration in the fields of taxonomy, ecology, physiology, genetics, comparative biology and systematics. We see this is the first step to digitalize all information related to the family Characidae and eventually the order Characiformes into the Encyclopedia of Life.
- Full name
- Fernando Jerep
- I am
- an enthusiast, a citizen scientist, a professional scientist
- Curator level
- Full Curator
- Rubenstein Fellow 2012 Visiting Researcher and Postdoctoral Fellow at the National Museum of Natural History - Smithsonian Institution.
- Curation scope
- Characiformes, with focus on Characidae.