Pseudecheneis sulcata (M’Clelland, 1842)

Heok Hee Ng, 2006, The identity of Pseudecheneis sulcata (M'Clelland, 1842), with descriptions of two new species of rheophilic catfish (Teleostei: Sisoridae) from Nepal and China., Zootaxa 1254, pp. 45-68 : 47-51

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Pseudecheneis sulcata (M’Clelland, 1842)


Pseudecheneis sulcata (M’Clelland, 1842) View in CoL

(Fig. 1)

Glyptosternon sulcatus M’Clelland, 1842   ZBK : 587, pl. 6 figs. 1-3 (type locality: Kasyah [Khasi] Hills, Meghalaya, India)

Pseudecheneis sulcatus Blyth, 1860: 154; Günther, 1864: 264; Day, 1877: 500, Pl. CXVI Fig. 1; 1889: 107, Fig. 44; Hora, 1923: 44, Pl. IV Fig. 1; Shaw & Shebbeare, 1938: 106, Figs. 109-110, Pl. 3 Fig. 12; Misra, 1976: 310, Pl. XV Fig. 6 (in part); Jayaram, 1979: 57 (in part); 1981: 268 (in part); 1999: 300, Fig. 154 (in part); Wu et al., 1981: 75; Sen, 1985: 167, Fig. 86; 1992: 202, Fig. 74; 1995: 577, Pl. XXXII Fig. 1; Talwar & Jhingran, 1991: 679 (in part); Wu & Wu, 1992: 534, Fig. 147; Zhang et al., 1995: 131, Fig. 58-1; Kundu, 2000: 100; Nath & Dey, 2000: 120, Fig. 107, Pl. 6 - 2.

Material examined

BMNH 1870.11.30.56 (3), 99.8-129.0 mm SL ; BMNH 1889.2.1.2718-2719 (2), 60.9-89.8 mm SL ; ZMA 121.861 (1), 87.8 mm SL; India: Meghalaya, Khasi Hills (Brahmaputra River drainage) . BMNH 1928.9.17.5 (1), 83.8 mm SL; India: Meghalaya, Khasi Hills, Nong Priang stream (Brahmaputra River drainage) . UMMZ 243677 (10) 46.6-118.1 mm SL; India: West Bengal, Rishi Khola (River) at Rishi (on W Bengal-Sikkim border) (Brahmaputra River drainage), 27°9’56.0"N 88°38’7.0"E . ZMA 121.862 (1), 55.2 mm SL; India: Meghalaya, Nong Priang stream below Cherrapunji (Brahmaputra River drainage) .


Pseudecheneis sulcata is distinguished from congeners except P. paviei   ZBK , P. sulcatoides   ZBK , and P. sympelvica in lacking a prominent bony spur on the anterodorsal surface of the first dorsal-fin pterygiophore (vs. spur present; Fig. 2). Pseudecheneis sulcata can be distinguished from P. paviei   ZBK and P. sympelvica in having an elongate body with 36-39 vertebrae (vs. short body with 33-35 vertebrae) and 12-14 (vs. 8-12) transverse laminae on the thoracic adhesive apparatus, and further differs from P. sympelvica in having separate (vs. fused) pelvic fins. It differs from P. sulcatoides   ZBK in having a longer caudal peduncle (25.0-28.3% SL vs. 22.5-23.7), a first dorsal-fin element (vs. element absent), and bifid (vs. non-bifid) neural spines on the complex vertebra. Pseudecheneis sulcata can be further distinguished from P. crassicauda   ZBK in having a more slender caudal peduncle (4.0-5.2% SL vs. 6.0-6.6) and larger eye (8.8-10.6% HL vs. 7.5-8.3), from P. eddsi in having a longer pelvic fin (21.2-28.7% SL vs. 18.0-20.9), from P. immaculata in having (vs. lacking) pale colored patches on the body and shorter adipose-fin base (17.8-22.7% SL vs. 27.7), and from P. serracula   ZBK in having a shorter adipose-fin base (17.8-22.7% SL vs. 26.8-30.4) and the neural spines of the last 2-3 preanal and first 6-7 postanal vertebrae gradually increasing in height (vs. corresponding neural spines strongly elevated). It further differs from P. stenura in having a shorter caudal peduncle (25.0-28.3% SL vs. 30.3-34.5) and pectoral fin (121.6-156.3% HL vs. 160.4-196.9), and from P. tchangi   ZBK in having fewer transverse lamellae (12-14 vs. 21) on the thoracic adhesive apparatus.


Morphometric data as in Table 1. Head and abdominal region narrow and strongly depressed. Dorsal profile rising gently from tip of snout to origin of dorsal fin, then almost horizontal or sloping very gently ventrally to end of caudal peduncle. Ventral profile horizontal to anal-fin base, then sloping very gently dorsally to end of caudal peduncle. Caudal peduncle slender, long, and moderately compressed. Anus and urogenital openings located at posteriormost extent of pelvic fin. Skin smooth, tuberculate in some areas. Lateral line complete and midlateral. Vertebrae 18+18=36 (2), 18+19=37 (7), 19+18=37 (1), 18+20=38 (2), 19+19=38 (3), 19+20=39 (2), or 20+19=39 (1).

Head acutely rounded when viewed from above. Snout gently convex when viewed laterally. Gill openings moderate, extending from posttemporal region to base of first pectoral-fin element. Head covered with thick, tuberculate skin. Ventral surface of head with unculiferous collar on distal margin of branchiostegal membrane immediately anterior to thoracic adhesive apparatus.

Thoracic adhesive apparatus consisting of 12-14 transverse ridges (laminae) separated by grooves (sulcae); ridges frequently not meeting at midline of adhesive apparatus. Adhesive apparatus extending from immediately posterior to collar on distal margin of branchiostegal membrane to level of last pectoral-fin ray.

Barbels flattened, and in four pairs. Maxillary barbel with ventral surface densely covered with papillae, and pointed tip; barbel extending about two-thirds of distance between its base and base of first pectoral-fin element. Distal half of barbel attached to snout via large, thin flap of skin. Nasal barbel with small flap of thin skin fringing posterior margin and extending midway to distance between posterior nares and anterior orbital margin. Inner mandibular-barbel densely covered with papillae; origin close to midline, extending to collar on distal margin of branchiostegal membrane. Outer mandibular barbel originates posterolateral of inner mandibular barbel, extending to level of anterior orbital margin. Eye small and almost rounded, subcutaneous and located on dorsal surface of head.

Mouth inferior, with moderately broad, thin papillate lips. Rictal lobe large and papillate. Premaxillary tooth band not exposed when mouth is closed. Premaxillary teeth short and conical, arranged in irregular rows on a moderately large quadrangular patch. Dentary teeth long, thin, and somewhat rounded at tip; arranged in irregular rows on two separated, roughly triangular patches.

Dorsal-fin origin located at point through anterior third of body. First and second dorsal fin-ray elements not ossified, bearing i,6 (18) rays, and fin margin straight. Adipose fin with short base, approximately 1.5 to 2 times of anal-fin base length; located in middle third of postdorsal region. Adipose fin margin gently convex; posterior end deeply incised. Caudal fin forked, with i,7,8,i (18) principal rays; procurrent rays symmetrical and extend only slightly anterior to fin base. Anal fin with short base extending approximately equal to adipose fin-base length and iii,8 (1), iv,7 (9), or iv,8 (8) rays. Anal fin margin almost straight.

Pelvic-fin origin at vertical through second or third dorsal fin-ray base. Pelvic fin greatly enlarged, extending to base of first anal-fin ray. Anterior fin margin strongly convex, first element broadened and with regular striae on ventral surface; with i,5 (18) rays. Pectoral fin greatly enlarged and with convex anterior margin, reaching to just beyond pelvic-fin base. First element not ossified, broadened and with regular striae on ventral surface; fin with i,12 (9) or i,13 (9) rays.


In 70% ethanol: chestnut brown on dorsal and lateral surfaces of head and body, fading to very light brown on ventral region. Dorsal surface of head and body with distinctive series of small, very light brown spots and bands: one ovate spot on base of first dorsal-fin ray, and another pair on each side of body immediately posterior to last dorsal-fin ray; one band on each side of body at adipose-fin origin, and another on caudal peduncle at base of caudal fin. Dorsal and anal fins hyaline, with brown base and brown subdistal band; brown coloration of base and subdistal band connected to each other at anterior third of fin. Adipose fin light brown, with lighter color around distal edge, especially at posterior end of fin. Caudal fin brown, with hyaline distal margin. Dorsal surfaces of pectoral and pelvic fins brown, ventral surfaces light yellow. Maxillary and nasal barbels brown dorsally and light yellow ventrally.


Known from the Brahmaputra River drainage (Fig. 3).


Although the specific epithet is often listed in the literature as sulcatus (see above), the correct epithet should be sulcata. This follows the gender of Pseudecheneis   ZBK (feminine), according to Article 31.2 of the International Code for Zoological Nomenclature (sulcatus being a participle of the verb sulco).

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