F. Hamilton, 1822
Chitala chitala (Bengali: চিতল, Assamese: চিতল "sitol", Tamil: அம்பட்டன்வாளை, சொட்டைவாளை or அம்புட்டன் வாழ) is a knifefish from Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan, where found in the Indus, Ganges-Brahmaputra and Mahanadi River basins. It is sometimes known as the Indian featherback. In the past it frequently included several related Chitala species, but these are now regarded as separate species. The main species confused with this species is C. ornata (clown featherback or clown knifefish); a Southeast Asian species seen regularly in the aquarium trade. The true C. chitala is very rare in the aquarium trade.
Chitala chitala reaches a maximum length of 122 cm (48 in), but more commonly reaches about 75 cm (30 in). It is overall silvery in color. Unlike all its relatives, it usually (but not always) has a series of golden or silvery bars along the back, resulting in a faint striped appearance. Additionally, it has a series of fairly small, sometimes indistinct, non-ocellated dark spots towards the far rear of the body (at the "tail"). This separates it from C. ornata, which has ocellated spots (dark spots surrounded by a paler ring) and lacks bars along the back. The two species have frequently been confused.
- S. Chaudhry (2010). "Chitala chitala". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 3.1 (3.1). International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
- Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2014). "Chitala chitala" in FishBase. May 2014 version.
- Seriously Fish: Chitala chitala. Retrieved 24 May 2014
- Roberts, T.R. (1992). Systematic revision of the old world freshwater fish family Notopteridae. Ichthyol. Explor. Freshwat. 2(4):361-383.