v. 14.0 – 19 Dec. 2017  view/download PDF

Family CURIMATIDAE Toothless Characiforms
8 genera · 112 species

Curimata Bosc 1817    Portuguese or local Brazilian name for curimatid-like fishes, apparently introduced in scientific literature by Marcgrave (1648) for Prochilodus argenteus (Prochilodontidae); name appears analogous to other Portuguese words, queriman and curema, used for the superficially similar mullets (Mugilidae)

Curimata acutirostris Vari & Reis 1995    acutus, sharp; rostris, snout, referring to distinctly pointed snout

Curimata aspera Günther 1868    asper, rough, referring to “conspicuously serrated” scales

Curimata cerasina Vari 1984    cherry colored, referring to red coloration of ventral surface in life

Curimata cisandina (Allen 1942)    cis-, on the same side as; andinus, belonging to the Andes, i.e., Cisandean, referring to distribution in western South America

Curimata cyprinoides (Linnaeus 1766)    oides, having the form of: presumably referring to its cyprinid-like appearance (“facie Cyprini Rutili”), specifically the Roach, Rutilus rutilus

Curimata incompta Vari 1984    unadorned, referring to absence of any marked pigmentation pattern

Curimata inornata Vari 1989    unadorned, referring to plain body, head and fin pigmentation

Curimata knerii Steindachner 1876    patronym not identified but clearly in honor of ichthyologist Rudolf Kner (1810-1869), who was Steindachner’s teacher and friend (and who studied curimatid fishes)

Curimata macrops Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889    macro-, large; ops, eye, referring to large eye, longer than snout

Curimata mivartii Steindachner 1878    patronym not identified but probably in honor of English zoologist St. George Jackson Mivart (1827-1900)

Curimata ocellata Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889    having little eyes, presumably referring to “oval blackish spot near the fortieth scale of the lateral line”

Curimata roseni Vari 1989    in honor of ichthyologist Donn E. Rosen (1929-1986), American Museum of Natural History, “teacher, friend, colleague,” who introduced Vari to systematic research and the study of characiform fishes

Curimata vittata (Kner 1858)    banded, referring to 8-10 vertical or nearly vertical dark bars on dorsal portion of body

Curimatella Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889    –ella, a diminutive, proposed as a subgenus of Curimatus with scaled caudal fins

Curimatella alburna (Müller & Troschel 1844)    Latin for whitefish, from albus, white, presumably referring to silvery coloration

Curimatella dorsalis (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    of the back, presumably referring to indistinct median keel anterior to dorsal fin

Curimatella immaculata (Fernández-Yépez 1948)    im-, not; maculata, spotted, presumably referring to lack of dark or black pigmentation

Curimatella lepidura (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    lepid, scale; oura, tail, referring to thickly scaled caudal-fin lobes

Curimatella meyeri (Steindachner 1882)    in honor of zoologist-anthropologist Adolf Bernhard Meyer (1840-1911), for the transfer of specimens from the Vienna Museum

Curimatopsis Steindachner 1876    opsis, appearance, proposed as a subgenus of Curimatus, i.e., Curimatus-like

Curimatopsis crypticus Vari 1982    hidden or secret, i.e., “hidden from science” as a result of its long-term misidentification as C. microlepis

Curimatopsis evelynae Géry 1964    in honor of Evelyn Axelrod, wife of pet-book publisher Herbert R. Axelrod (1927-2017), whose Tropical Fish Hobbyist magazine published this description and several others by Géry

Curimatopsis guaporensis Melo & Oliveira 2017    ensis, suffix denoting place: Rio Guaporé, a tributary of the Rio Madeira, Mato Grosso, Brazil, type locality

Curimatopsis jaci Melo & Oliveira 2017    from the Tupí Yacy, referring to the lunar goddess Jaci, “one of the most adored divinities of nature for indigenous people” in Amazonia, honoring Melo’s mother, Maria Jaci Petrini de Melo, who always encouraged him to study fishes

Curimatopsis macrolepis (Steindachner 1876)    macro-, large; lepis, scale, referring to large scales, ~31 in a longitudinal series between head and tail

Curimatopsis maculosa Melo, Vari & Oliveira 2016    spotted, referring to prominent small posteriorly placed dark spot on middle of caudal peduncle, a unique pigmentation pattern in the genus

Curimatopsis microlepis Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889    micro-, small; lepis, scale, referring to scales “all small, entire”

Curimatopsis myersi Vari 1982    in honor of Stanford University ichthyologist George S. Myers (1905-1985), for his contributions to the knowledge of neotropical characiforms

Curimatopsis pallida Melo & Oliveira 2017    pale, referring to complete absence of a dark blotch of pigmentation over caudal peduncle (all congeners possess a variably conspicuous dark blotch on caudal peduncle or, at least, a faint dark blotch below its midline)

Cyphocharax Fowler 1906    cypho-, bent or hunchbacked, referring to “well elevated” back, “hunched, anteriorly”; Charax, typical genus of the Characiformes, from Greek word meaning “palisade of pointed sticks,” referring to densely-packed sharp teeth, now a common root-name formation in the order

Cyphocharax abramoides (Kner 1858)    oides, having the form of: the cyprinid Abramis brama, referring to very deep, laterally flattened body

Cyphocharax albula (Lütken 1874)    whitish, allusion not explained, possibly referring to bright silver sides of belly (“laterum ventrisque argyreo-splendens”)

Cyphocharax aninha Wosiacki & da Silva Miranda 2014    nickname of Ana Prudente, wife of senior author, for her contributions toward the understanding of the neotropical fauna, specifically the systematics of snakes

Cyphocharax aspilos Vari 1992    unspotted or spotless, referring to absence of any pronounced pigmentation on head and body

Cyphocharax biocellatus Vari, Sidlauskas & Le Bail 2012    bi-, two; ocellatus, having little eyes, referring to two small dark spots, one under dorsal fin and other on middle of caudal peduncle

Cyphocharax boiadeiro Melo 2017    named for the rio Boiadeiro, one of the paratype localities near Alto Araguaia, Mato Grosso, Brazil; name also honors the boiadeiros (cowboys) of central Brazil, who preserve their classic traditions and influenced regional lifestyles, food and music

Cyphocharax derhami Vari & Chang 2006    in honor of Swiss ichthyologist and aquarist Patrick de Rham, who helped junior author collect paratype series and other fishes in Peru

Cyphocharax festivus Vari 1992    Latin for pleasing, referring to its “pleasing aspect” (which aspect Vari found pleasing is not indicated)

Cyphocharax gangamon Vari 1992    Greek for net, referring to reticulate pattern on dorsal and lateral surfaces of body

Cyphocharax gilbert (Quoy & Gaimard 1824)    in memory of M. (Monsieur?) Gilbert, naval surgeon who died of yellow fever in the Antilles [a noun in apposition, without the patronymic “i”]

Cyphocharax gillii (Eigenmann & Kennedy 1903)    in honor of Smithsonian zoologist Theodore Gill (1837-1914), for his “valuable contributions” to the knowledge of characiform fishes

Cyphocharax gouldingi Vari 1992    in honor of conservation ecologist Michael Goulding, who collected type and large series of other valuable specimens, and who has “contributed greatly to our knowledge of the life history of many Amazonian species”

Cyphocharax helleri (Steindachner 1910)    patronym not identified but probably in honor of Austrian botanist Karl Bartholomaeus Heller (1824-1880)

Cyphocharax jagunco Dutra, Penido, Mello & Pessali 2016    jagunço, Portuguese equivalent to “roughneck,” in honor of the 1956 modernist Brazilian novel Grande Sertão: Veredas by João Guimarães Rosa, which is narrated by a jagunço, and which takes place in the northern portion of Minas Gerais, Brazil, a region that includes type locality

Cyphocharax laticlavius Vari & Blackledge 1996    latus, wide; clavius, bar, i.e., broad-striped, referring to dark midlateral stripe on body

Cyphocharax leucostictus (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    leukos, white; stictus, spotted, referring to white spot at base of each caudal lobe

Cyphocharax magdalenae (Steindachner 1878)    of the Río Magdalena, northwestern Colombia, type locality

Cyphocharax meniscaprorus Vari 1992    meniskos, crescent; prora, prow, referring to rounded anterior portion of head

Cyphocharax mestomyllon Vari 1992    mestos, full; myllon, lip, referring to fleshy upper lip

Cyphocharax microcephalus (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    micro-, small; cephalus, head, not mentioned in description, nor does head appear to be conspicuously smaller compared to congeners, perhaps referring to “slightly depressed [profile] at occiput”

Cyphocharax modestus (Fernández-Yépez 1948)    unassuming, allusion not explained; name (coined by Amaral Campos) dates to a 1906 museum label, possibly referring to yellowish-brown coloration

Cyphocharax multilineatus (Myers 1927)    multi-, many; lineatus, lined, referring to narrow, longitudinal, wavy and dark stripes across dorsal and lateral surfaces

Cyphocharax naegelii (Steindachner 1881)    patronym not identified, possibly in honor of Swiss botanist Carl Wilhelm von Nägeli (1817-1891) [often but incorrectly spelled nagelii]

Cyphocharax nigripinnis Vari 1992    nigra, black; pinna, fin, referring to black pigmentation on distal portion of adipose fin

Cyphocharax notatus (Steindachner 1908)    marked, perhaps, per Steindachner’s description, referring to dense covering of dark dots on scales on upper half of body when viewed under microscope

Cyphocharax oenas Vari 1992    Greek for wild pigeon or dove, referring to name of type locality, Paloma (a caño in Venezuela), which is Castilian for pigeon or dove

Cyphocharax pantostictos Vari & Barriga S. 1990    panto-, all; stictos, spotted, i.e., spotted all over, referring to prominent dark spots on lateral and dorsal surfaces

Cyphocharax pinnilepis Vari, Zanata & Camelier 2010     pinnis, fin; lepis, scale, referring to patch of scales over basal portions of caudal-fin lobes

Cyphocharax platanus (Günther 1880)    anus, belonging to: Río de la Plata, Argentina, type locality (also occurs in Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay)

Cyphocharax plumbeus (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    lead-colored, referring body coloration with silver and blue reflections

Cyphocharax punctatus (Vari & Nijssen 1986)    spotted, referring to 3-6 spots on body

Cyphocharax saladensis (Meinken 1933)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Río Salado, Argentina, type locality (also occurs in Brazil and Paraguay)

Cyphocharax sanctigabrielis Melo & Vari 2014    latinization of São Gabriel, referring to São Gabriel da Cachoeira, Amazonas State, Brazil, near type locality

Cyphocharax santacatarinae (Fernández-Yépez 1948)    of Santa Catarina, Brazil, type locality

Cyphocharax signatus Vari 1992    marked or stamped, referring to distinct spot on midlateral surface of caudal peduncle

Cyphocharax spilotus (Vari 1987)    spotted or stained, referring to midlateral spot on caudal peduncle

Cyphocharax spiluropsis (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    opsis, likeness, referring to similarity to C. spilurus

Cyphocharax spilurus (Günther 1864)    spilos, spot; oura, tail, referring to black spot at caudal peduncle

Cyphocharax stilbolepis Vari 1992    stilbo, shining; lepis, scale, referring to bright silvery coloration

Cyphocharax vanderi (Britski 1980)    in honor of Vander M. Britski, the author’s brother, who helped collect type

Cyphocharax vexillapinnus Vari 1992    vexillum, flag; pinnus, fin, referring to prominent black spot on dorsal fin

Cyphocharax voga (Hensel 1870)    local Brazilian name for this species

Potamorhina Cope 1878    etymology not explained, perhaps potamos, river, referring to distribution in the Amazon River; rhine, rasp, referring to “acute recurved spiniform scales” on keel of P. pristigaster

Potamorhina altamazonica (Cope 1878)    –ica, belonging to: alta-, upper, referring to distribution in upper Amazon River basin of Peru (also occurs in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela)

Potamorhina laticeps (Valenciennes 1850)    latus, wide; –ceps, head, referring to large, wide head compared to other curimatids known to Valenciennes

Potamorhina latior (Spix & Agassiz 1829)    broader, referring to thick, wide head

Potamorhina pristigaster (Steindachner 1876)    pristis, saw; gaster, belly, referring to highly serrate postpelvic median keel

Potamorhina squamoralevis (Braga & Azpelicueta 1983)    squama, scale; ora, edge; levis, smooth, referring to smooth-edged postventral scales on keel

Psectrogaster Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889    psectro-, saw-like; gaster, belly, referring to trenchant scales on ventral ridge

Psectrogaster amazonica Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889    ica, belonging to: Amazon River basin, where it is widely distributed [originally spelled amozonica, presumably a typographical error, one of many in the description]

Psectrogaster ciliata (Müller & Troschel 1844)    ciliate, referring to comb-like ctenii on margin of ctenoid scales

Psectrogaster curviventris Eigenmann & Kennedy 1903    curvis, curved; ventris, belly, referring to “regularly arched” ventral outline

Psectrogaster essequibensis (Günther 1864)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Essequibo River, Guyana, type locality (also occurs in Amazon basin)

Psectrogaster falcata (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    falcatus, sickle-shaped, referring to long, falcate anal fin

Psectrogaster rhomboides Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889    oides, having the appearance of: a rhomboid, referring to compressed, rhomboidal body shape

Psectrogaster rutiloides (Kner 1858)    oides, having the form of: presumably referring to superficial resemblance to the European cyprinid Rutilus rutilus

Psectrogaster saguiru (Fowler 1941)    Saguirú, local name for this species in Brazil

Pseudocurimata Fernández-Yépez 1948    pseudo-, false, i.e., although this genus may superficially resemble Curimata, such an appearance is false

Pseudocurimata boehlkei Vari 1989    in honor of the late James E. Böhlke (1930-1982), Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, who first recognized this species as undescribed, and who made many contributions to the knowledge of South American freshwater fishes

Pseudocurimata boulengeri (Eigenmann 1907)    in honor of ichthyologist-herpetologist George A. Boulenger (1858-1937), who described this species in 1898 but used a preoccupied name

Pseudocurimata lineopunctata (Boulenger 1911)    lineo-, line; punctata, spotted, referring to round black spots on lateral scales, which form a “regular longitudinal series”

Pseudocurimata patiae (Eigenmann 1914)    of the Patia River basin, Colombia, where it is endemic

Pseudocurimata peruana (Eigenmann 1922)    ana, belonging to: Peru, where it is endemic

Pseudocurimata troschelii (Günther 1860)   in honor of zoologist Franz Hermann Troschel (1810-1882), who, with Johann Müller, published an important early study of characiform fishes in 1844

Steindachnerina Fowler 1906    ina, belonging to: Franz Steindachner (1834-1919), Royal Academy of Natural Sciences of Vienna, for his “thoroughly excellent” contributions to ichthyology

Steindachnerina amazonica (Steindachner 1911)    ica, belonging to: Amazonas (state), Brazil, where it is endemic

Steindachnerina argentea (Gill 1858)    silvery, referring to “uniform silvery” coloration

Steindachnerina atratoensis (Eigenmann 1912)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Atrato River basin, Colombia, where it is endemic

Steindachnerina bimaculata (Steindachner 1876)    bi-, two; maculata, spotted, referring to black spots at base of middle caudal- and dorsal-fin rays

Steindachnerina binotata (Pearson 1924)    bi-, two; notata, marked, referring to dark spot along dorsal midline immediately anterior of dorsal fin, and elongate spot along dorsal midline immediately posterior of tip of supraoccipital spine

Steindachnerina biornata (Braga & Azpelicueta 1987)    bis, twice; ornata, adorned, referring to double pigmentation pattern, i.e., spots on lateral-line scales and on dorsum and sides of body

Steindachnerina brevipinna (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    brevis, short; pinna, fin, allusion not explained; described as a subspecies of Cyphocharax gilbert, so perhaps authors were referring to marginally smaller number of dorsal- and anal-fin rays in the new taxon and/or to the “low” fins of the putative nominate form

Steindachnerina conspersa (Holmberg 1891)    speckled, referring to black dots scattered on body and fins, covering edges of each scale

Steindachnerina corumbae Pavanelli & Britski 1999    of Rio Corumbá, upper Rio Paraná basin, Goiás, Brazil, type locality

Steindachnerina dobula (Günther 1868)    latinization of Döbel, German name for Squalius cephalus (Cyprinidae), which this species apparently resembles

Steindachnerina elegans (Steindachner 1875)    elegant, fine or select, allusion not explained, perhaps referring to coloration in life: bright silver head and body, yellowish fins, black spot at base of dorsal fin, and yellow band on sides

Steindachnerina fasciata (Vari & Géry 1985)    striped, referring to longitudinal body stripes

Steindachnerina gracilis Vari & Williams Vari 1989    slender, referring to relatively elongate body

Steindachnerina guentheri (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889)    in honor of ichthyologist and herpetologist Albert Günther (1830-1914) of the British Museum

Steindachnerina hypostoma (Boulenger 1887)    hypo-, below; stoma, mouth, referring to inferior mouth

Steindachnerina insculpta (Fernández-Yépez 1948)    engraved, referring to sculptural (“escultórica”) or very corrugated (“muy corrugadas”) form (i.e., texture) of the scales

Steindachnerina leucisca (Günther 1868)    leukiskos, Greek word for chub, apparently referring to resemblance to European cyprinid Leuciscus leuciscus

Steindachnerina notograptos Lucinda & Vari 2009    notos, back; graptos, marked, referring to dark brown spots on dorsolateral portion of body

Steindachnerina notonota (Miranda Ribeiro 1937)    noto, mark; notus, back, referring to black eyespot at the middle of dorsal fin base

Steindachnerina planiventris Vari & Williams Vari 1989    planum, flat; venter, belly, referring to flattened ventral surface

Steindachnerina pupula Vari 1991    pupil of the eye, referring to dark, pupil-like spot at base of dorsal fin

Steindachnerina quasimodoi Vari & Williams Vari 1989    of Quasimodo, hunchbacked bellringer in Victor Hugo’s 1831 novel, Notre-Dame de Paris, referring to pronounced dorsal profile of larger specimens

Steindachnerina seriata Netto-Ferreira & Vari 2011    arranged in a series, referring to multiple series of narrow dark stripes along scale-row margins on lateral and dorsolateral surfaces of body

Steindachnerina varii Géry, Planquette & Le Bail 1991    in honor of Richard P. Vari (1949-2016), Smithsonian Institution, who revised most of the curimatids as well as many other groups of characiform fishes

3 genera · 21 species       

Ichthyoelephas Posada 1909    ichthos, fish; elephas, elephant, referring to its “trompa carnosa” (fleshy proboscis) or “trompa” (trunk)

Ichthyoelephas humeralis (Günther 1860)    pertaining to shoulder, referring to black spot behind shoulder on fourth, fifth and sixth scales of lateral line

Ichthyoelephas longirostris (Steindachner 1879)    longus, long; rostris, snout, referring to “remarkably” long snout (translation)

Prochilodus Agassiz 1829    pro-, in front of; cheilos, lip; odus, teeth, i.e., teeth projecting from lips, referring to tiny teeth that cover lips

Prochilodus argenteus Spix & Agassiz 1829    silvery, referring to its “glistening” (translation) silvery sides

Prochilodus brevis Steindachner 1875    short, allusion not explained nor evident; perhaps (according to text) referring to shorter body height compared to P. vimboides and/or (based on accompanying illustrations) shorter, squatter body compared to P. harttii

Prochilodus britskii Castro 1993    in honor of Heraldo A. Britski (Universidade de São Paulo), who made specimens available to Castro, and for his “great” contributions to Brazilian ichthyology

Prochilodus costatus Valenciennes 1850    ribbed, allusion not explained nor evident, perhaps referring to pattern of dark versus lighter bars on side of body (R. P. Vari, pers. comm.)

Prochilodus harttii Steindachner 1875    in honor of Charles Frederick Hartt (1840-1878), geologist, paleontologist and naturalist, who helped collect type during the Thayer Expedition (1865-1866) to Brazil [misspelled hartii, but since Steindachner stated that the name honors Hartt within the description, correction is obligatory per ICZN Art. 32.5.1]

Prochilodus lacustris Steindachner 1907    lacustrine, referring to type localities in two Brazilian lakes, Lago de Parnaguá and Lagoa da Missão

Prochilodus lineatus (Valenciennes 1837)    lined, presumably referring to multiple dark, wavy, longitudinal stripes along lateral surface of body

Prochilodus magdalenae Steindachner 1879    of the Magdalena River, Colombia, type locality

Prochilodus mariae Eigenmann 1922    in honor of Hermano Apolinar Maria, Director, Museum at the Instituto de La Salle, Bogotá, (1867-1949), Director, Museum at the Instituto de La Salle, Bogotá, who provided Eigenmann with “valuable collections” of fishes from the Meta River basin of Colombia, including this one

Prochilodus nigricans Spix & Agassiz 1829    blackish, referring to blackish-green coloration on sides and/or blackish dots on dorsal and anal fins

Prochilodus reticulatus Valenciennes 1850    netted, referring to net-like appearance of scales lined with green

Prochilodus rubrotaeniatus Jardine 1841    rubro-, red; taeniatus, banded, bands of “pale rose-colour” on body

Prochilodus vimboides Kner 1859    oides, having the form of: presumably referring to superficial resemblance to the European cyprinid Vimba vimba

Semaprochilodus Fowler 1941    sema, banner, being a Prochilodus with a black-banded, falcate dorsal fin and/or a banded, flag-like caudal fin

Semaprochilodus brama (Valenciennes 1850)    brama, derived from abramis, Greek for bream or mullet, referring to Abramis brama-like appearance of high dorsal profile

Semaprochilodus insignis (Jardine 1841)    conspicuous, referring to its “gaudily coloured” appearance

Semaprochilodus kneri (Pellegrin 1909)    in honor of Austrian ichthyologist Rudolf Kner (1810-1869), who suspected this was a distinct species in 1859

Semaprochilodus laticeps (Steindachner 1879)    latus, wide; –ceps, head, referring to “broad, strongly arched” head (translation)

Semaprochilodus taeniurus (Valenciennes 1821)    taenio-, band; oura, tail, referring to seven longitudinal bands on caudal fin

Semaprochilodus varii Castro 1988    in honor of Richard P. Vari (1949-2016), Smithsonian Institution, who demonstrated the monophyly of this family (1983) and advanced a hypothesis of its phylogenetic position

Family LEBIASINIDAE Pencilfishes
6 genera · 77 species/subspecies


Lebiasina Valenciennes 1847    diminutive of Lebias, a Greek name for a kind of small fish, usually applied to killifishes (Cyprinodontiformes), referring to compressed, tricuspid teeth, “similar to those of Cyprinodons” (translation)

Lebiasina ardilai Netto-Ferreira, Lopez-Fernandez, Taphorn & Liverpool 2013    in honor of Carlos Ardila Rodríguez, Universidad Metropolitana (Barranquilla, Colombia), for numerous contributions to the systematics of pencilfishes

Lebiasina astrigata (Regan 1903)    a-, without; strigata, striped, referring to uniform coloration, absent of stripes

Lebiasina aureoguttata (Fowler 1911)    aureus, golden; guttata, spotted, referring to “gilt or golden blotch at inner basal region” of scales

Lebiasina bimaculata Valenciennes 1847    bi-, two; maculata, spotted, referring to black spots at beginning of lateral line and middle of caudal-fin insertion

Lebiasina boruca (Bussing 1967)    named for tribe of indigenous people that formerly inhabited southeastern Costa Rica, where it is endemic

Lebiasina chocoensis Ardila Rodríguez 2010    ensis, suffix denoting place: Chacó, Colombia, type locality

Lebiasina chucuriensis Ardila Rodríguez 2001    ensis, suffix denoting place: San Vicente de Chucurí, Departamento de Santander, Colombia, type locality

Lebiasina colombia Ardila Rodríguez 2008    named in honor of the author’s native country, Colombia (also where fish is endemic)

Lebiasina elongata (Boulenger 1887)    elongate, height of body “considerably less” than length of head, and 1/5 of SL

Lebiasina erythrinoides (Valenciennes 1850)    oides, having the form of: referring to similarity to Erythrinus erythrinus (Erythrinidae)

Lebiasina festae (Boulenger 1899)    in honor of Italian naturalist Enrico Festa (1868-1939), who collected type

Lebiasina floridablancaensis Ardila Rodríguez 1994    ensis, suffix denoting place: Municipio de Floridablanca, Departamento de Santander, Colombia, type locality

Lebiasina intermedia Meinken 1936    intermediate in body measurements and color between L. bimaculata and L. multimaculata

Lebiasina marilynae Netto-Ferreira 2012    in honor of Marilyn Weitzman, Smithsonian Institution, who devoted her career to the study of fishes of the families Lebiasinidae and Characidae

Lebiasina melanoguttata Netto-Ferreira 2012    melano-, black; guttata, dotted, referring to longitudinal series of dark blotches along flanks

Lebiasina minuta Netto-Ferreira 2012    small, referring to its size, no larger than 68.4 mm SL

Lebiasina multimaculata Boulenger 1911    multi-, many; maculata, spotted, referring to 9-11 roundish black spots on sides

Lebiasina narinensis Ardila Rodríguez 2002    ensis, suffix denoting place: Departamento d Nariño, Colombia, type locality, and for the hospitality of its people

Lebiasina ortegai Ardila Rodríguez 2008    in honor of Armando Ortega Lara, for his contributions to scientific knowledge of Colombian fishes

Lebiasina panamensis (Gill 1877)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Isthmus of Panama, type locality (also occurs in Colombia)

Lebiasina pleurotaenia (Regan 1903)    pleuro-, side; taenia, band, referring to dark longitudinal stripe along middle of side

Lebiasina provenzanoi Ardila Rodríguez 1999    in honor of Francisco Provenzano R., Instituto de Zoología Tropical de la Universidad Central de Venezuela, for his contributions to the ichthyology of Venezuela and Colombia

Lebiasina taphorni Ardila Rodríguez 2004    in honor of Donald C. Taphorn, Universidad Nacional Experimental de los Llanos Orientales “Ezequiel Zamora” (Guanare, Venezuela), for his valuable contributions to Venezuelan ichthyology

Lebiasina unitaeniata (Günther 1864)    uni-, one; taeniata, banded, referring to indistinct dark band from end of operculum to lower half of caudal-fin base

Lebiasina uruyensis Fernández-Yépez 1967    ensis, suffix denoting place: Río Uruyén, Estado Bolívar, Venezuela, type locality

Lebiasina yepezi Netto-Ferreira, Oyakawa, Zuanon & Nolasco 2011    in honor of Venezuelan ichthyologist Agustín Fernández-Yépez (1916-1977), who first collected this species in 1951

Lebiasina yuruaniensis Ardila Rodríguez 2000    ensis, suffix denoting place: Río Yuruaní drainage, Gran Sabana, Estado Bolívar, Venezuela, type locality


Copeina Fowler 1906    ina, belonging to: the late Edward Drinker Cope (1840-1897), zoologist and paleontologist, “who studied most of the fishes included” in Fowler’s paper on heterognathus fishes

Copeina guttata (Steindachner 1876)    spotted or speckled, referring to reddish spots on sides

Copeina osgoodi Eigenmann 1922    in honor of zoologist William Hudson Osgood (1875-1947), Field Museum of Natural History (Chicago, USA), who collected type

Copella Myers 1956    ella, diminutive connoting endearment: in honor of Edward Drinker Cope (1840-1897), zoologist and paleontologist

Copella arnoldi (Regan 1912)    in honor of German aquarist Johann Paul Arnold (1869-1952), who collected type

Copella callolepis (Regan 1912)    callo-, beautiful; lepis, scale, presumably referring to pale spot on each scale (except below dusky band on lower body)

Copella compta (Myers 1927)    elegant, representing the “acme of gracefulness reached by characins of the Pyrrhulininae”

Copella eigenmanni (Regan 1912)    in honor of ichthyologist Carl H. Eigenmann (1863-1927), who collected type

Copella nattereri (Steindachner 1876)    in honor of Johann Natterer (1787-1843), who explored South America and collected specimens for 18 years, including type of this species

Copella vilmae Géry 1963    matronym not identified but according to a 1965 Sports Illustrated article on pet-book publisher Herbert R. Axelrod (1927-2017), name was coined by ethnographer and fish collector Harald Schultz (1909-1966), who collected type and said he had found a fish beautiful enough (with bright-red belly and two metallic blue spots) to be named after his wife Vilma

Nannostomus Günther 1872    nanus, dwarf; stomus, mouth, referring to “narrow” mouth of N. beckfordi

Nannostomus anduzei Fernandez & Weitzman 1987    in honor of Venezuelan scientist and explorer Pablo Anduze, who provided much help to the senior author in her work on the fishes of the Territorio Federal de Amazonas

Nannostomus beckfordi Günther 1872    in honor of beekeeper and naturalist F. J. B. Beckford (1842-1920), who presented type to the British Museum (Natural History)

Nannostomus bifasciatus Hoedeman 1954    bi-, two; fasciatus, banded, referring to black lateral band and, presumably, to narrow golden-red streak just above it on males or narrow black band just below dorsum (description does not mention this latter character)

Nannostomus britskii Weitzman 1978    in honor of Heraldo Britski, Curator of Fishes, Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo (Brazil), who collected type

Nannostomus digrammus (Fowler 1913)    di-, two; grammus, line, referring to two lengthwise blackish bands or streaks on sides

Nannostomus eques Steindachner 1876    horseman or rider, allusion not explained, probably referring to nocturnal oblique band (saddle-like marking on sides that is weak or absent in daylight, very dark at night, and usually present in preserved specimens) [note: Steindachner used this name for two other characiforms with saddle-like markings, Abramites eques and Hyphessobrycon eques]

Nannostomus erythrurus (Eigenmann 1909)    erythros, red; urus, tail, referring to two red spots at base of caudal fin

Nannostomus espei (Meinken 1956)    in honor or ornamental fish importer-exporter Heinrich Espe, who supplied specimens (mixed in with a shipment of N. trifasciatus) to Meinken for identification

Nannostomus grandis Zarske 2011    large, at 46 mm SL, the largest known Nannostomus

Nannostomus harrisoni (Eigenmann 1909)    in honor of John Burchmore Harrison, Government Geologist, Georgetown, British Guiana, for his assistance during Eigenmann’s 1908 expedition

Nannostomus limatus Weitzman 1978    elegant, refined or polished, allusion not explained, presumably referring to elongate, compressed body and/or attractive appearance or color pattern

Nannostomus marginatus marginatus Eigenmann 1909    margined, referring to broad dark band on sides, finely edged above and below with red

Nannostomus marginatus picturatus Hoedeman 1954    painted, allusion not explained, perhaps referring to red blotch between primary and secondary stripes on caudal peduncle

Nannostomus marilynae Weitzman & Cobb 1975    in honor of the senior author’s wife, Marilyn Weitzman, an ichthyologist herself, “who has long shared his appreciation for the delicate beauty of members of the genus Nannostomus

Nannostomus minimus Eigenmann 1909    least, referring to small size, described at 20-21 mm

Nannostomus mortenthaleri Paepke & Arendt 2001    in honor of aquarium-fish exporter Martin Mortenthaler (b. 1961), owner of Aquarium Rio Momon SRL, Iquitos, Peru, who collected type

Nannostomus nigrotaeniatus Zarske 2013    nigro-, black; taeniatus, banded, referring to primary horizontal stripe, wider than band on both the closely related N. erythrurus and N. trifasciatus

Nannostomus nitidus Weitzman 1978    neat, elegant or shining, allusion not explained, presumably referring to elongate, compressed body and/or attractive appearance or color pattern (although colors in life were not described)

Nannostomus rubrocaudatus Zarske 2009    rubro-, red; caudatus, tailed, referring to “exceedingly attractive” (translation) coloration of males in life

Nannostomus trifasciatus Steindachner 1876    tri-, three; fasciatus, banded, referring to three longitudinal bands on sides (upper and lower bands much thinner than middle band)

Nannostomus unifasciatus Steindachner 1876    uni-, one; fasciatus, banded, referring to prominent black band running from snout into lower lobe of caudal fin

Pyrrhulina Valenciennes 1846    pyrrhos, flame-colored fire; –ina, a diminutive, presumably referring to “uniformly red coloration” (translation) and small size (6.35 cm) of P. filamentosa

Pyrrhulina australis Eigenmann & Kennedy 1903    southern, presumably referring to distribution (described from Paraguay) south of “evidently closely related” P. semifasciata (Amazon River basin)

Pyrrhulina beni Pearson 1924    referring to lower Río Beni basin, Bolivia, type locality (also occurs in Brazil and Peru)

Pyrrhulina brevis Steindachner 1876    short, allusion not explained, probably referring to shorter longitudinal stripe (lower jaw to posterior edge of head) compared to P. semifasciata (lower jaw to middle of abdomen)

Pyrrhulina eleanorae Fowler 1940    in honor of Eleanor Morrow, wife of William P. Morrow, who led Peruvian expedition that collected type

Pyrrhulina elongata Zarske & Géry 2001    referring to elongated body shape (depth at beginning of dorsal fin 4.8-5.1 times in SL)

Pyrrhulina filamentosa Valenciennes 1847    referring to filamentous dorsal- and caudal-fin rays

Pyrrhulina laeta (Cope 1872)    pleasant, probably referring to pleasant coloration (e.g., orange-red fins, scales orange at base with broad blackish margins forming rows of spots)

Pyrrhulina lugubris Eigenmann 1922    funereal, probably referring to purple body color, a traditional mourning color in some cultures

Pyrrhulina marilynae Netto-Ferreira & Marinho 2013    in honor of Marilyn Weitzman, Smithsonian Institution, for her assistance to both authors since they began studying the family Lebiasinidae

Pyrrhulina maxima Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1889    greatest or longest, presumably referring to larger size compared to the “closely related” P. brevis and P. (=Copella) nattereri

Pyrrhulina melanostoma (Cope 1870)    melanos, black; stomus, mouth, referring to black band through operculum and orbit around edge of premaxillary, and second black band around edge of mandible

Pyrrhulina obermulleri Myers 1926    in honor of the late August Obermüller, who first introduced Myers to South American characins at his “aquarium establishment” in Jersey City, New Jersey, USA

Pyrrhulina semifasciata Steindachner 1876    semi-, half or partial; fasciata, banded, referring to blackish longitudinal stripe from front edge of lower jaw to middle of abdomen

Pyrrhulina spilota Weitzman 1960    spotted, referring to three spots on sides and one at base of caudal fin

Pyrrhulina stoli Boeseman 1953    in honor of Dutch naturalist E. C. Stol, who collected type

Pyrrhulina vittata Regan 1912    banded, probably referring to three blackish bars on body

Pyrrhulina zigzag Zarske & Géry 1997    referring to zigzag shape of longitudinal band on sides

Incertae sedis

Derhamia Géry & Zarske 2002    ia, belonging to: Patrick de Rham, Swiss ichthyologist and aquarist, who discovered type species and collected first specimens while evaluating the ecological and sociological impacts of a large hydroelectic dam at type locality in 1975

Derhamia hoffmannorum Géry & Zarske 2002    orum, commemorative suffix, plural: in honor of Peter Hoffman and Martin Hoffman (Salzgitter and Hanover, Germany, respectively), who collected holotype specimens and acclimated other specimens to captivity, giving authors “precious” information about its biology

Family CTENOLUCIIDAE Pike-Characids
2 genera · 7 species

Boulengerella Eigenmann 1903    ella, diminutive connoting endearment: in honor of ichthyologist-herpetologist George A. Boulenger (1858-1937), British Museum (Natural History)

Boulengerella cuvieri (Spix & Agassiz 1829)    in honor of the “immortal” (translation) Georges Cuvier (1769-1832), French naturalist and zoologist, described as the first to accurately diagnose the family Salmones (which at the time included all characiform fishes)

Boulengerella lateristriga (Boulenger 1895)    lateris; side; striga, streak, presumably referring to dark gray lateral band

Boulengerella lucius (Cuvier 1816)    pike, referring to elongate, pike-like shape

Boulengerella maculata (Valenciennes 1850)    spotted, referring to blackish spots on unpaired fins (although spots are also on body)

Boulengerella xyrekes Vari 1995    Greek for dagger or sharp as a razor, referring to overall shape of head and body

Ctenolucius Gill 1861    cteno-, referring to strongly ctenoid scales; lucius, pike, referring to elongate, pike-like body

Ctenolucius beani (Fowler 1907)    in honor of Barton A. Bean (1860-1947), Assistant Curator of Fishes, United States National Museum (not to be confused with his better-known brother, Tarleton H. Bean, also an ichthyologist)

Ctenolucius hujeta (Valenciennes 1850)    local name among fishermen for this species in Venezuela

7 genera · 26 species

Subfamily ACESTRORHYNCHINAE Smallscale Pike Characins

Acestrorhynchus Eigenmann & Kennedy 1903    akestra, ancient Greek for darning needle; rynchus, snout, allusion not explained, probably referring to sharp canine teeth

Acestrorhynchus abbreviatus (Cope 1878)    shortened, probably referring to “relatively short muzzle”

Acestrorhynchus altus Menezes 1969    altus, high or deep, allusion not explained, perhaps referring to “very deep” body

Acestrorhynchus britskii Menezes 1969    in honor of ichthyologist Heraldo A. Britski (Departamento de Zoologia, Secretaria de Agricultura, São Paulo), who collected type

Acestrorhynchus falcatus (Bloch 1794)    sickle-shaped, referring to falcate anal fin (“pinna ani falcate”)

Acestrorhynchus falcirostris (Cuvier 1819)    falci-, sickle-shaped; rostris, snout, referring to concave upper jaw

Acestrorhynchus grandoculis Menezes & Géry 1983    grandis, large; oculis, eye, referring to “enormous” eye which, in proportion to head length, is larger than that of all congeners

Acestrorhynchus heterolepis (Cope 1878)    heteros, different; lepis, scale, referring to lateral-line scales larger than other scales on body

Acestrorhynchus isalineae Menezes & Géry 1983    in honor of the late Isaline Drecq, wife of Guy van den Bossche, participant in expedition that collected type

Acestrorhynchus lacustris (Lütken 1875)    lacustrine (belonging to a lake), referring to Lagoa Santa, a small tropical lake in Brazil, type locality

Acestrorhynchus maculipinna Menezes & Géry 1983    macula, spot; pinna, fin, referring to conspicuous large black spot on dorsal fin

Acestrorhynchus microlepis (Jardine 1841)    micro-, small; lepis, scale, referring to “very minute” scales, 108-122 along lateral line

Acestrorhynchus minimus Menezes 1969    least, probably referring to “small (S.L. 36-84 mm) and low” body

Acestrorhynchus nasutus Eigenmann 1912    long-nosed, referring to long, soft-tipped snout

Acestrorhynchus pantaneiro Menezes 1992    inhabitant of the Pantanal region, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil, where it is abundant


Gnathocharax Fowler 1913    gnathos, jaw, referring to oblique, elongate maxillary; Charax, typical genus of the Characiformes, from Greek word meaning “palisade of pointed sticks,” referring to densely packed sharp teeth, now a common root-name formation in the order

Gnathocharax steindachneri Fowler 1913    in honor of Austrian ichthyologist Franz Steindachner (1834-1919)

Heterocharax Eigenmann 1912    heteros, different, allusion not explained nor evident; Charax, typical genus of the Characiformes, from Greek word meaning “palisade of pointed sticks,” referring to densely packed sharp teeth, now a common root-name formation in the order

Heterocharax leptogrammus Toledo-Piza 2000    leptos, thin; gramme, line, referring to thin stripe above anal-fin base

Heterocharax macrolepis Eigenmann 1912    macro-, large; lepis, scale, referring to large, “regularly imbricate” scales

Heterocharax virgulatus Toledo-Piza 2000    striped, referring to two distinctive stripes, one extending longitudinally along middle of body, the other on lower portion of body from dorsal-fin origin to anal-fin base

Hoplocharax Géry 1966    hoplo-, armed, referring to strong and pointed pectoral fin spine and three opercular spines; Charax, typical genus of the Characiformes, from Greek word meaning “palisade of pointed sticks,” referring to densely packed sharp teeth, now a common root-name formation in the order

Hoplocharax goethei Géry 1966    in honor of the late Charles M. Goethe (1875-1966), founder, Sacramento State College (now California State University, Sacramento) for his support of scientists and students in the fields of biology, conservation and education

Lonchogenys Myers 1927    lonchos, lance; genys, cheek, referring to strong acute point on angle of interopercle

Lonchogenys ilisha Myers 1927    “A replica in miniature” of the clupeiform (Pristigasteridae) genus Ilisha

Subfamily ROESTINAE Biting Tetras

Gilbertolus Eigenmann 1907    olus, diminutive connoting endearment: in honor of Stanford University ichthyologist Charles Henry Gilbert (1859-1928) [replacement name for Gilbertella Eigenmann 1903, preoccupied by Gilbertella Waite 1902 in fishes (Serranidae)]

Gilbertolus alatus Steindachner 1878    winged, referring to long pectoral fins, reaching beyond anal-fin origin

Gilbertolus atratoensis Schultz 1943    ensis, suffix denoting place: Atrato River basin, Colombia, where it is endemic

Gilbertolus maracaiboensis Schultz 1943    ensis, suffix denoting place: Lake Maracaibo basin, Venezuela, where it is endemic

Roestes Günther 1864    etymology not explained, perhaps from rodo, to gnaw and edestes, one who eats, referring to well-developed canine teeth

Roestes itupiranga Menezes & Lucena 1998    referring to Itupiranga, a town and municipality in Pará, Brazil, type locality

Roestes molossus (Kner 1858)    etymology not explained, perhaps alluding to Molossus, an extinct ancient breed of dog (ancestor to the Mastiff) known for its wide, short muzzle, solid build and pugnacious appearance, attributes, along with dog-like teeth, that easily apply to this fish (an interpretation supported by its original placement in Cynopotamus, meaning “river dog”)

Roestes ogilviei (Fowler 1914)    in honor of Scottish adventurer John Ogilvie, who collected type