Hyphessobrycon melanostichos

28. April 2017

In our latest newsletter I made a regattable mistake: I used pictures of Hyphessobrycon cf. melanostichos instead of pictures of the „real“ Hyphessobrycon melanostichos in the post; H. cf. melanostichos differs a lot from the „real“ species in life colours. So here are now pictures of the „real“ H. melanostichos, the fish we currently have in stock. It is very interesting that in tis species the male changes a lot in coloration, as we have seen it in Hemigrammus coeruleus. This is very unusual in species of the Hemigrammus-Hyphessobrycon-relationship, in which the males usually only get a bit brighter coloration during courtship.

Hyphessobrycon melanostichos has a striking bright skyblue dorsal coloration. The species has been described scientifically in 2006 from the state of Mato Grosso in Brazil; here H. melanostichos is found in the upper reaches of the Rio Tapajós basin. The species is distinguished from all other species of Hyphessobrycon by the comobination of the following characters: „a conspicuous longitudinal broad black band, beginning on the posterior margin of orbit and reaching the distal tip of middle caudal fin rays; humeral spot vertically elongate and distinct from lateral band; and 16 to 18 branched anal-fin rays.“ (Carvalho & Bertaco, 2006)

The coloration (of preserved fish) is the same in Hyphessobrycon cf. melanostichos, but this form has 19 branched anal fin rays. Moreover in the original description of H. melanostichos a freshly preserved male is illustrated, obviously a breeding animal. The coloration of this specimen fits perfectly to the one of the mating male we can illustrate here (it is one of the parents of the fish we currently have in stock). So we have no doubt anymore that we now have the „real“ Hyphessobrycon melanostichos in stock, while the status of the H. cf. melanostichos remains the subject of further investigations.

For our customers: the „real“ Hyphessobrycon melanostichos has code 261832 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply the wholesale trade.

Text: Frank Schäfer, photos: Frank Schäfer, Peter & Martin Hoffmann


Carvalho, T. P. and V. A. Bertaco (2006): Two new species of Hyphessobrycon (Teleostei: Characidae) from upper rio Tapajós basin on Chapada dos Parecis, central Brazil. Neotropical Ichthyology v. 4 (no. 3): 301-308.