Maxilla reduced and lacking teeth; body deep; dorsal and anal fins relatively long, dorsal with 16-24 rays and anal with 19-31 rays. Maximum length about 84 cm.
Three genera, Citharinus with six species and the monotypic Citharinops and Citharidium (J. Daget in Daget et al. 1984:212-16).
Family PARODONTIDAE (110)—parodontids. Freshwater, benthic; mountain streams of eastern Panama and most of South America.
Peculiar fishes with ventral mouths and teeth modified for scraping algae off rocks; premaxillaries highly mobile and greatly enlarged; adipose eyelid absent; lateral line scales 35-43; pectoral fins expanded and flattened; vertebrae 35-41. Maximum length usually 15 cm.
Formerly considered a subfamily of Hemiodontidae. Recognized here following Buckup (1998) as forming a polytomy with two other clades of the Charocoidei, the Anostomoidea and all other characiforms (his clade 9, recognized in six superfamilies and 11 families).
Three genera, Apareiodon (8), Parodon (10), and Saccodon (3), with about 21 species, and several undescribed species (Pavanelli, 2003).
Unnamed clade of Family CURIMATIDAE + Family PROCHILODONTIDAE. Large sac-like muscular epibranchial organ that extends dorsal to the medial elements of the dorsal portions of the gill arches; reduction or loss of dentition on the fifth upper pharyngeal tooth plate and loss on the cerato-branchial. Typically detritivorous.
The two families included here were recognized by Vari (1983, 1989). Many of the synapomorphies he listed to indicate that they form a monophyletic clade are associated with food gathering and manipulation. The two families were recognized in Nelson (1994) as subfamilies of the Curimatidae.
About 11 genera and 116 species.
Family CURIMATIDAE (111)—toothless characiforms. Freshwater; southern Costa Rica to northern Argentina.
Jaw teeth absent (Anodus is the only other characiform lacking jaw teeth); enlarged lagenar capsule; gill rakers absent or poorly developed; four bran-chiostegal rays; branchiostegal membranes united to isthmus; vertebrae usually 30-36.
Body form ranges from fusiform to deep-bodied and compressed; most are mulletlike in shape. Curimatids are microphagous fishes. Maximum length about 32 cm, attained in Curimata mivartii.
Eight genera, Curimata (synonym Acuticurimata), Curimatella,, Curimatopsis, Cyphocharax, Potamorhina (synonyms Gasterotomus, Suprasinelepichthys), Psectrogaster, Pseudocurimata, and Steindachnerina (synonyms Cruxentina, Curimatorbis), with about 95 species (e.g., Vari, 1991, 1992a, b, 2003a). The eight genera that are currently recognized are keyed in Vari (1992b).
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