Monday, February 6, 2012

[Ichthyology • 2008] 5 new Puntius (Teleostei: Cyprinidae) from Myanmar • including Lipstick Barb Puntius erythromycter

Adult male Puntius erythromycter 
Photo by  © Mick Wright from

Five small species of Puntius, all characterised by a prominent blotch or band on the caudal peduncle, occur syntopic in small streams around Myitkyina and also Lake Indawgyi in northern Myanmar. Puntius erythromycter, new species, is characterised by a small size (to 33.1 mm SL), a dark band around the caudal peduncle, an abbreviated lateral line, males with reddish snout beset with tubercles, and absence of barbels. Puntius nankyweensis, new species, is diagnosed by a small size (to 32.5 mm SL), presence of minute barbels, a dark band around the caudal peduncle, an abbreviated lateral line, and absence of a scale row above the lateral line. Puntius thelys, new species, is a moderate sized species (to 41.8 mm SL), with an abbreviated lateral line, a dark blotch on the caudal peduncle, and absence of humeral marking. Puntius macrogramma, new species, is a moderate sized species (to 50.9 mm SL), with complete or almost complete lateral line, a minute humeral spot, and a dark blotch on the caudal peduncle. Puntius erythromycter, P. nankyweensis, P. thelys, and P. macrogramma are referred to the P. conchonius species group. Puntius pugio, new species, reaching 39.3 mm SL, is similar to P. amphibius, P. brevis, P. burmanicus, P. chola, P. leiacanthus, P. sophore, and  P. terio in the presence of a frontoparietal fontanelle and also characterised by the absence of barbels, a complete lateral line, last unbranched dorsal fin ray without serrae, and a dark band around the caudal peduncle. Cyprinus puntio Hamilton, 1822, originally described from India but later only reported from Myanmar, is considered to be a species inquirenda. It cannot be identified on the basis of the description and there are no type specimens preserved. 

• Puntius erythromycter (Lipstick barb)
• Puntius nankyweensis
• Puntius thelys
• Puntius macrogramma
• Puntius pugio

Adult female Puntius erythromycter - Lipstick Barb. 
Photo by  © H-J Chen from

Subadult female of Puntius erythromycter. The reddish colouration in the dorsal fin is lost as the fish mature.
Photo by  © Choy Heng Wah from

Kullander, S.O. 2008. Five new species of Puntius from Myanmar (Teleostei: Cyprinidae). Ichthyol. Explor. Freshwaters. 19(1):59-84.