woensdag 17 juni 2009

White finned gudgeon (Romanogobio belingi)


The fish that nobody ever noticed? Anglers love to catch fish, but most of them are more intererested in size and quantity then what they have just caught. This species has probably always been indigenous here, but due to its likeness to Gobio gobio it has never been noticed as being a different kind of fish. Actually I caught the first documented one in this country in 2004, alerted by the publications of Freyhof about findings in the Rhine River system in 1998.

Anyway this year they seem to be blooming in our major rivers because my friend caught about twelve of them near Wageningen 20 km downstream and I caught three specimen. Determination of cyprinids and fish is not an easy thing which can be demonstrated comparing this picture with the other one of the same fish freshly caught. In the other picture no black spotting can be seen due to the action of chromatophores concentrating the black pigment into tiny dots. After keeping the fish in a glass jar in the shade the spots became very obvious, just as the nice markings along the lateral line. Most typical of this fish is its habitat, right in the middle of big rivers on sandy bottoms contrary to Gobio gobio which prefers smaller waters and less current.
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