Homatula laxiclathra Gu & Zhang, 2012
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Family:  Nemacheilidae (Brook loaches)
Max. size:  13.67 cm SL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  demersal; freshwater
Distribution:  Asia: Yellow River drainage in Shaanxi, China.
Diagnosis:  Homatula laxiclathra is similar to H. variegate, H. berezowskii, and H. longidorsalis in the shared presence of slender bodies with uniform depth [9.3–15.8% (mean 12.5) SL], a character distinguishing them from all remaining species of this genus where they have deeper bodies [13.6–23.9% (mean 16.6) SL] and their body depth evenly decreases posterior to the posterior end of the dorsal-fin base. The new species differs from H. variegata, H. berezowskii, and H. longidorsalis in having vertical brown bars on the caudal peduncle twice as wide as (vs. much narrower or slightly wider than) their interspaces. This new species, along with H. berezowskii, is further distinguished from H. variegata and H. longidorsalis by the presence of a shorter head (length 15.6–21.1% SL vs. 18.3–25.3), a shallower caudal peduncle (depth 8.4–11.4% SL vs. 9.6–13.6), a shorter adipose crest along the dorsal midline of the caudal peduncle anteriorly not extending to the midway of the analfin base (vs. extending beyond the vertical through the anal-fin origin), a scaleless (vs. partially scaled) predorsal body, and an intestine with (vs. without) a loop or bend behind the stomach. It is further distinct from H. berezowskii in having an oblique (vs. truncate) posterior margin of the caudal fin, and a narrower interorbital space [width 19.9–24.9 (average 22.5)% HL vs. 24.1–29.7 (average 27.0)]. The new species has an intestine with a loop anteriorly reaching the posterior surface of the U-shaped stomach, whereas the other related species do not have a loop at this portion of the intestine (Ref. 88693).
IUCN Red List Status: Not Evaluated (N.E.) Ref. (123251)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   

Entered by: Torres, Armi G. - 22.11.11
Modified by: Bailly, Nicolas - 31.10.12

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