Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish - Melanotaenia parva
Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish - Melanotaenia parva

Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish - Melanotaenia parva

The Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish was scientifically described by Allen in 1990. Its scientific name is Melanotaenia parva. Allen found the species during an exhibition to nearby Bintuni Bay in 1989.

The Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish can reach a length of roughly 6 cm. There are two main types of male colouration. The first type is pale lilac or bluish with a black mid-lateral stripe and red fins, while the second type is silvery with red speckles and red fins. In the second type, a thin red stripe is present between each row of scales along the sides of the body. The females are not as vividly coloured as the males.

The Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish has 6-7 dorsal spines, 11-14 dorsal soft rays, 1 anal spine, and 19-24 anal soft rays.

Geographical distribution, habitat and conservation

Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish
Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish - Copyright
The Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish has only been found in Lake Kurumoi, a lake situated at the Vogelkop Peninsula in West Papua (formerly Irian Jaya), Indonesia. Lake Kurumoi is a part of the Yakati River watershed. It is located 400 meters (over 1300 feet) above sea level and surrounded by mountainous terrain. Lake Kurumoi is not a very big lake; roughly 800 meters (2625 feet) long and 500 meters (1640 feet) wide.

Strangely enough, the isolated and remotely located Lake Kurumoi is inhabited by the Mozambique Tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus). It is believed to have been introduced when the region was still a Dutch colony, but no one knows for sure.

The Lake Kurumoi Rainbowfish has been listed as “Vulnerable” in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species since 1996. Between 1994 and 1996, it was listed as “Rare”.  

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