Freshwater fishes of India

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India is rich with inland freshwater fish, with about 940 species known from its rivers, lakes and estuaries. This constitutes about 38% of the Indian Ichthyofauna and are of considerable economic and scientific value. Of these about 500 species are primary freshwater fish with around 65% endemic, cloistered in the two hot spots of India, the Western Ghats and the North East. Many of these are unique to certain stretches of the various rivers especially the upper reaches and many more new species are being reported from these forested hills. However, threats to these fauna are aplenty, with urbanization, deforestation, habitat loss, pollution, over-harvesting, and culture of exotics. The only way for a fish enthusiast to save the fish and its habitats is creating awareness among the people. In this context, knowledge of the fish fauna of a region is the first step towards conservation.

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