Stock identification of endangered Clown knife fish Chitala chitala (Hamilton-Buchanan, 1822) from Indian rivers inferred by morphological attributes


Uttam Kumar Sarkar1, Prashant Kumar Deepak2, W. S. Lakra


 National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources, Canal Ring Road, PO. Dilkusha, Lucknow-226002, Uttar Pradesh, India.,

1 Corresponding author

2 Krishi Vigyan Kendra Pakur, Birsa Agriculture University, Ranchi,

PO : Maheshpur Block, Pakur,Pakur – 816106, Jharkhand.


Abstract: Clown knife fish Chitala chitala (Hamilton Buchanan) belongs to the family Notopteridae, is an endangered species geographically distributed in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Thailand and Indonesia. The population of fish has been declined more than 50% over the last 10 years and the species is categorized as endangered (EN) in India. The species is highly priced, cultivable and have high conservation significance and due to its high demand it has been declared as a “State Fish” of Uttar Pradesh, India.  The purpose of the study was to determine the stock identification of fish using morphometric and meristic methods.  Stocks of C. chitala from twelve different geographical locations were collected and studied well. It was observed that the stocks were differed in the body structure, pectoral fins and mouth shape from most of the population but meristic character was not much varied from each other.  The ratio of measurements of various body parts are computed and described systematically in a comparative form.  To obtain a reliable result on raciation of population of twelve different stocks of featherbacks, comparison of regression coefficient of correlation, analysis of variance were carried out for the first time. This study also provides a first report into the distinct morphological variation including descriptors in their early life stages.


Keywords: C. chitala, morphometrics, stock identification, conservation, India,


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