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Rediscovery and redescription of the unusual subterranean characiform Stygichthys typhlops, with notes on its life history

Authors

  • C. R. Moreira,

    Corresponding author
    1. Seção de Peixes, Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, Caixa Postal 42494, CEP 04218-970, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
      Author to whom correspondence should be addressed at present address: Departamento de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Rua Prof. Artur Riedel, 275, Diadema, SP, 09972-270, Brazil. Tel.: +55 11 4049 3300 (3089); fax: +55 11 4043 6428; email: moreira.c.r@gmail.com
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  • M. E. Bichuette,

    1. Departamento de Zoologia, Instituto de Biociências, Universidade de São Paulo, Caixa Postal 11461, CEP 05422-970, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
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    • §

      Present address: Departamento de Ecologia e Biologia Evolutiva, Universidade Federal de São Carlos, via Washington Luis, km 235, C.P. 676, São Carlos, SP, 13565-905, Brazil.

  • O. T. Oyakawa,

    1. Seção de Peixes, Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, Caixa Postal 42494, CEP 04218-970, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
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  • M. C. C. De Pinna,

    1. Seção de Peixes, Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, Caixa Postal 42494, CEP 04218-970, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
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  • E. Trajano

    1. Departamento de Zoologia, Instituto de Biociências, Universidade de São Paulo, Caixa Postal 11461, CEP 05422-970, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed at present address: Departamento de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Rua Prof. Artur Riedel, 275, Diadema, SP, 09972-270, Brazil. Tel.: +55 11 4049 3300 (3089); fax: +55 11 4043 6428; email: moreira.c.r@gmail.com

Abstract

The rediscovery of the enigmatic subterranean characiform Stygichthys typhlops is reported almost a half-century after the collection of the holotype, the only specimen previously known. Thirty-four specimens were collected in two shallow hand-dug wells at the region of the type locality, c. 13 km south-west of the town of Jaíba, Minas Gerais, Brazil. These specimens provide new information on the morphology of this species, and for the first time on its life history. The conservation status of S. typhlops is discussed. The species is severely threatened by habitat loss caused by exploitation of the aquifer.

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