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New Species of Giant Amazon Fish Discovered in Brazil

Oct 17, 2013 16:01 IST

Scientists from the State University New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry discovered a new species of arapaima - a giant torpedo-shaped fish - in the central Amazon waters of Brazil. The discovery was reported in October 2013 scientific journal Copeia.

According to National Geographic it is the first new arapaima species to be discovered since 1847. Arapaimas are huge freshwater fish native to the Amazon River in Brazil and can reach lengths of more than 2 m and weigh up to 200 kg.

For the last two centuries, arapaimas are most important commercial fishes in freshwaters of the Amazon and it has high economic, cultural and scientific value, but their diversity has been overlooked.

Scientists stated that the discovery of Arapaima suggests there may be important new conservation issues to consider, particularly with regards to overfishing and the region's expanding fish farming industry.

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