Dama ciega blanca (Typhliasina pearsei)

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Dama ciega blanca specimen
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Dama ciega blanca fact file

Dama ciega blanca description

KingdomAnimalia
PhylumChordata
ClassActinopterygii
OrderOphidiiformes
FamilyBythitidae
GenusTyphliasina (1)

Like many brotulids, this blind, cave-dwelling fish has evolved to exist completely without eyes. This unusual-looking species has a large head with a broad snout, while the scaled body is clear white to pinkish, with long translucent dorsal and anal fins (2).

Also known as
Mexican blind brotula.
Synonyms
Ogilbia pearsei.
Size
Length: up to 9 cm (2)
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Dama ciega blanca biology

The dama ciega blanca is believed to feed primarily upon a variety of crustaceans. Females ‘give birth’ to two to eleven live young, depending on the female’s size. Reproduction occurs between December and February, and young are independent from birth (2).

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Dama ciega blanca range

Occurs along the Yucatan peninsula of Mexico in Central America (2) (3).

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Dama ciega blanca habitat

Found in freshwater limestone caves and sinkholes (2) (3).

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Dama ciega blanca status

Classified as Vulnerable (VU) on the IUCN red List 2006 (1).

IUCN Red List species status – Vulnerable

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Dama ciega blanca threats

The main threats to this species are various forms of water pollution caused by humans. In rural areas sewage is rarely treated before being discarded, and industrial and domestic waste is sometimes disposed of in caves. Another threat comes from over-harvesting of fresh-water, which may lead to saline waters creeping into the normally freshwater zone. The human population of the Yucatan peninsula is growing, so a greater and greater strain on water resources can be expected in the future. Another potential threat is the modification and/or the intensive use of this fish’s habitat by humans for recreational or tourism purposes (2).

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Dama ciega blanca conservation

There are currently no conservation measures targeting this species.

View information on this species at the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre.
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Find out more

For more information on the dama ciega blanca see:

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Authentication

This information is awaiting authentication by a species expert, and will be updated as soon as possible. If you are able to help please contact: arkive@wildscreen.org.uk
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Glossary

Anal fin
In fish, an unpaired fin on the under surface of a fish, behind the anus.
Dorsal fin
The unpaired fin found on the back of the body of fish.
Saline waters
Containing salt.
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References

  1. IUCN Red List (January, 2007)
    http://www.iucnredlist.org
  2. Anchialine Caves and Cave Fauna of the World (January, 2007)
    http://www.tamug.edu/cavebiology/fauna/bonyfish/T_pearsei.html
  3. FishBase (January, 2007)
    http://www.fishbase.org/summary/SpeciesSummary.php?id=6213
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Image credit

Dama ciega blanca specimen  
Dama ciega blanca specimen

© Dr. Thomas M. Iliffe

Dr. Thomas M. Iliffe
Department of Marine Biology
Texas A&M University at Galveston
5007 Ave. U
Galveston
TX
77551
United States of America
iliffe@cavebiology.com
http://www.cavebiology.com

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