Among the most attractive species of Corydoras that have been imported in the past years is the “New Panda” from Colombia. We obtained the first speciemens in 2010. There do exist two varieties of the species. One has a larger black spot that extends over the middle of the body down in direction of the belly (CW 49), in the other variety this spot is smaller and restricted to the upper half of the body (CW 51). It is said that the two varieties do not appear together in the same habitat, despite the fact that both are collected for the trade in the same river – the Rio Vaupes or its tributaries.
Our finding that both varieties are exported together and that also intermediate animals appear gives a different picture. In any case, CW 49 and CW 51 are with some certainty members of the same species in the zoological sense of the word. But for sure one can imagine that there do exist local varieties of the species. In case one owns both sexes of the same variety and is able to breed with them, he or she should publish the results in respect of the coloration of the offspring. This could help to solve the riddle. At east CW 51 is said to have been bred successful already, but no details are yet available to us.
According o informations published on Ian Fuller´s page “http://www.corydorasworld.com” (this is also the place where the CW-numbers are given), CW 51 originates from “Brazil/Colombia small creek near the setttlement of Villa Bittencourt on the Brazilian side where the Apaporis merges with the Rio Caquetá (which later – in Brazil, is called Rio Içá)”. (Information provided by Heiko Bleher). The very same source gives “Colombia, a small creek which enters the Rio Içá very near the Indian settlement Boa Vista, on the middle of the Rio Içá, also left bank.” for CW 49.
However, it is extremely likely that the species are by far more widespread than these informations seem to suggest. So let´s stay curious!
Text & photos: Frank Schäfer
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