Puntius sanctus 

#GS3 #Biodiversity #Speices  

Velankanni in Tamil Nadu has thrown up a new species of small freshwater fish of the family Cyprinidae. The silver-hued fish has been christened Puntius sanctus — ‘sanctus’ is Latin for holy — after the popular pilgrim town. 



  • The Puntius species are known locally as ‘Paral’ in Kerala and ‘Kende’ in Tamil Nadu. They are purely freshwater fishes.  
  • While the genus shows great species richness in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the specimen from Velankanni bears “distinct differences” from its Puntius cousins.  
  • Its physical characteristics included a protractible mouth, a pair of maxillary barbels (a sensory organ near the snout), 24-25 lateral line scales and 10 pre-dorsal scales. 
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