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Hepsetus lineata
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Characiformes
Family: Hepsetidae
C. L. Hubbs, 1939
Genus: Hepsetus
Swainson, 1838
Type species
Salmo odoe
Bloch, 1794

Hydrocyonoides Castelnau, 1861
Sarcodaces Günther, 1864

Hepsetus is a genus of African fishes, the African pike characins, in the order Characiformes. It is the sole genus in the family Hepsetidae. It was long believed that only a single widespread species existed, H. odoe, but studies in 2011–2013 have shown that this species is restricted to parts of West and Central Africa. The well-known species of southern Africa, including Kafue River, is Hepsetus cuvieri.[1] These predatory fish reach up to 70 cm (28 in) in length.[2]


There are currently six recognized species in this genus:[3]



  1. ^ a b Zengeya, T.A., Decru, E. & Vreven, E. (2011): Revalidation of Hepsetus cuvieri (Castelnau, 1861) (Characiformes: Hepsetidae) from the Quanza, Zambezi and southern part of the Congo ichthyofaunal provinces. Journal of Natural History, 45 (27–28): 1723–1744.
  2. ^ Froese, Rainer, and Daniel Pauly, eds. (2017). Species of Hepsetus in FishBase. March 2017 version.
  3. ^ Eschmeyer, W. N.; R. Fricke; and R. van der Laan (1 March 2017). Catalog of Fishes. Archived 2015-05-03 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 23 March 2017.
  4. ^ a b Decru, E., Vreven, E. & Snoeks, J. (2013): A revision of the Lower Guinean Hepsetus species (Characiformes; Hepsetidae) with the description of Hepsetus kingsleyae sp. nov. Journal of Fish Biology, 82 (4): 1351–1375.
  5. ^ Decru, E., Snoeks, J. & Vreven, E. (2015): Taxonomic evaluation of the Hepsetus from the Congo basin with the revalidation of H. microlepis (Teleostei: Hepsetidae). Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters, 26 (3): 273–287.
  6. ^ a b Decru, E., Snoeks, J. & Vreven, E. (2013): The true identity of the holotype of Hepsetus odoe and the names of the two West African species of Hepsetus (Teleostei: Hepsetidae). Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters, 24 (2): 187–192.
  7. ^ Decru, E., Vreven, E. & Snoeks, J. (2011): A revision of the West African Hepsetus (Characiformes: Hepsetidae) with a description of Hepsetus akawo sp. nov. and a redescription of Hepsetus odoe (Bloch, 1794). Journal of Natural History, 46 (1–2): 1–23.
  8. ^ FishBase: Scientific Names where Genus Equals Hepsetus