|Male Betta persephone|
Betta persephone is a species of gourami endemic to Malaysia where it is only known from Johor. This betta's specific epithet derives from the Greek goddess Persephone, queen of the Underworld, a reference to the largely blackish colouration of this fish.
Distribution and habitat
Betta persephone has a limited distribution in Malaysia, the type locality being Ayer Hitam in Johor. This Betta species inhabits soft, acidic waters at temperatures of 23‒28 °C (73‒82 °F). The typical habitat is closed-canopy forest where it is dark on the forest floor and there is thick vegetation on the banks of the blackwater streams and peat swamps where this fish lives among submerged tree roots. Sometimes it may be forced to live temporarily among the wet leaf litter in periods when the peaty pools dry up.
B. persephone has been listed as "Critically Endangered" on the IUCN Red List since 1996, as its natural range is restricted to a very small and diminishing area of swampy water bodies in tropical forests. Its habitat is being diminished by the clearing of the forests to make way for oil palm cultivation. While a delicate species not easily kept in aquaria, it has been bred successfully in captivity.
- Kottelat, M. 1996. Betta persephone. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org Archived June 27, 2014, at the Wayback Machine.>. Downloaded on 20 March 2014.
- Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2014). "Betta persephone" in FishBase. February 2014 version.
- "Betta persephone". International Betta Congress Species Maintenance Program. Archived from the original on 2013-04-15. Retrieved 2006-07-01.
- "Betta persephone Schaller, 1986". Seriously Fish. Retrieved 2013-12-27.