From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Pteropsaron indicum
Mains level : NA
Scientists have reported the discovery of the new species of signal fish, the first one of the genus recorded in Indian waters.
- The species named Pteropsaron indicum was collected by trawlers at a depth of 70 metres during a marine biodiversity survey.
- Signal fishes are tiny and fragile and are often found in waters below 50 m. Pteropsaron indicum is one of the distinctly larger species of signal fish.
- It has a unique colour pattern and an interesting behaviour that allows it to communicate with others of the same species by flipping its highly specialised dorsal fins.
- The new fish sports three distinct bright yellow bands on a pale greyish pink background.
- The body and head are criss-crossed with dark margins of large-scale pockets.
- It is also characterized by three extended dorsal fin spines, a high number of vertebrae and a relatively large body size.
Why study them?
- Signal fishes are a poorly studied group of benthic species found in deep sandy habitats, usually close to coral reefs.
- They are known to flip up their extended dorsal fins to signal each other.
- The discovery of the species indicates the presence of patchy corals off the Kerala coast and therefore with a lot of conservation value.