Systematics of nemipterid fishes (Perciformes: Nemipteridae) of Odisha coast, north-western Bay of Bengal with first records of four species
The north-eastern coast of India is rich in marine floral and faunal biodiversity, yet relatively less studied. This study aims to review and update the species diversity of nemipterids along the north-eastern coast of India, particularly Odisha, and provide a simple key for easy identification. An ichthyofaunal survey piloted during 2017 – 2020 along the Odisha coast confirmed the occurrence of seven valid species of nemipterids namely, Nemipterus bipunctatus (Valenciennes, 1830), N. japonicus (Bloch, 1791), N. nematophorus (Bleeker, 1854), N. peronii (Valenciennes, 1830), N. randalli Russell, 1986, Parascolopsis aspinosa (Rao & Rao, 1981), and Scolopsis vosmeri (Bloch, 1792), adding four species to the previously annotated checklist of 2007. The present paper reports the first record of four species namely, N. nematophorus, N. peronii, N. randalli, and P. aspinosa from the Odisha coast in the Bay of Bengal. Based on the findings of the present study and available literature, a key to the reported and identified species of the family Nemipteridae from the Odisha coast was developed with a detailed description of taxonomic characters for easy identification.
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