Freshwater Aquarium Fish Species Profile: African Cichlid
The large rift lakes of Africa are the ancient home of great biodiversity; 10% of the world's fish species live there.
The African Butter Fish, scientific name Schilbe mystus, is a species of fish that is a member of the Schilbeidae family of catfishes that are found in Asia and Africa. Adults of the species can grow to weigh as much as 8.8 ounces and to be 16 inches in length. The species has a compressed body and an adipose fin. The head and upper-side of the fish are a brownish color, while the belly is a silvery-white color and the fins are almost always colorless. Their most common habitat is usually in slowly floating or standing open freshwater of rivers, ponds, lakes and shallow swamps. They are also sometimes found in freshwater sandy streams or shallow flood plains. This species is very widespread.
These colorful fishes are popular among , but they are unsuitable for typical because of their aggressive behavior, especially when breeding. West African Jewelfish are beautiful creatures.
Freshwater Fish Species in Lake Victoria [East central Africa]
African Fish-eagle (Haliaeetus vocifer) - BirdLife species factsheet
Information pertaining to the commercial availability of fish species in South Africa remains sparse, even though it is crucial for consumers to make informed purchasing decisions in favour of their own well being and the well being of the environment. The aim of this study was to determine the most commonly available fish species in South Africa by means of surveys of restaurants (n = 215) and retail outlets (n = 200) and to assess the conservation statuses of the observed species. Furthermore, the processing states in which fish were mostly sold (fresh, frozen, whole or filleted) and the quality of information available to consumers on fish at the point of sale were evaluated. Kingklip was found to be the most commonly marketed fish species in restaurants, while hake was observed most frequently in retail outlets. More than 30% of the observed species were of conservation concern and included, amongst others, kingklip, kabeljou (kob), east- and west coast soles and geelbek. Specially-protected, illegal-to-sell fish in South Africa, such as white steenbras, white musselcracker and Natal stumpnose, were marketed in restaurants and retail outlets. This study highlighted the poor ability of fish purveyors in South Africa to provide information on the identity, origin, production method and sustainability of fish being sold. Additionally, the labelling of many packaged fish products in retail outlets was in contravention with South African regulations. Poor vendor awareness, disparate naming practices and the highly processed nature of fishery products provide an opportunity for unintentional or deliberate mislabelling of fish in South Africa.The mislabelling of fishery products has emerged as a serious problem on global markets, raising the need for the development of analytical tools for species authentication. DNA barcoding, based on the sequencing of a standardised region of the cytochrome c oxidase I (COI) gene, has received considerable attention as an accurate and broadly applicable tool for animal species identifications. The aim of this study was to investigate the utility of DNA barcoding for the identification of a variety of commercial fish in South Africa and, in so doing, to estimate the prevalence of species substitution and fraud prevailing on this market. A ca. 650 base pair (bp) region of the COI gene was sequenced from 248 fish samples collected from seafood wholesalers and retail outlets in South Africa, following which species identifications were made in the Barcode of Life Database (BOLD) and in GenBank. DNA barcoding was able to provide unambiguous species-level identifications for 235 of 248 (95%) samples analysed. Overall, 10 of 108 (9%) samples from wholesalers and 43 of 140 (31%) from retailers were identified as different species to the ones indicated at the point of sale. Although some cases of mislabelling were potentially unintentional due to misapplied market nomenclature, a far greater proportion represented serious and seemingly deliberate acts of fraud for the sake of increased profits. This study has highlighted that the existing legislation pertaining to seafood marketing in South Africa is inadequate or poorly enforced and requires urgent revision. In the light of the results presented here, DNA barcoding appears to hold great potential for fish authentication monitoring by both regulatory bodies and industry, the utilisation of which could enhance transparency and fair trade on the domestic fisheries market.