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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Wildlife Series - Fishes. (1995-10)

SARDINE (Sardinella longiceps)
It is known as oil sardine. Eyes are with broad adipose eyelids. The lower jaw is prominent. Colour is steel blue along back with a golden sheen, becoming silvery with purple at sides. A golden line is prominent dividing the back from sides. The dorsal fin is greenish, while the caudal is greenish grey. It is caught in large quantities from Mangrove areas and used in preparation of fish meal. The fish meal is consumed mostly in preparation of poultry feed. It attains 8 inches in length.
TILAPIA (Tilapia mossambica)
It is an African fish. Introduced in Pakistan in 1951. It is a medium size fish. Head is broad, snout rounded, eyes larger. Colour is brownish, olive or blackish. Vertical and ventral fins blackish; dorsal and caudal edge yellowish.
It breeds three time in a year. The female protects the eggs and the hatchlings by taking them in her mouth at the time of danger. It attains length upto 30 cms.
It is a carnivorous fish.
TROUT (Salmo trutta fario)
It is commonly known as brown trout, It was introduced into the Northern Areas (Gilgit) in 1916 by some British political officers.
Now it is widely distributed in various streams, rivers and lakes of Northern Areas. In NWFP, the brown trout was first introduced in 1928 in Kaghan Valley. It was subsequently introduced into the Swat and Chitral values.
The brown trout is more or less dark brown in colour with a greenish brown to greyish green back and lighter side and belly. The head, back and sides are marked with black and red spots.
Similarly the dorsal and adipose fins are also marked with black and red spots.
This fish is generally found in the cool and crystal clear water. It is a carnivorous fish and feeds upon a variety of animals including small fishes. Its breeding period extends from October to January. The growth rate is slow because of its inhabiting in cold water.
For the artificial breeding of brown trout, there are many hatcheries in NWFP and Northern Areas. The most famous hatchery is in Swat at Madyan.
It is a game fish in rivers and hilly areas and caught with great zeal providing good sport to anglers. It attains a length of about 1 1/2 feet.
ROHU (Labeo rohita)
It is commonly known as Rohu, found in the plains of Pakistan. Lips are thick with distinct inner fold to each lip. Snout is obtuse and depressed. A short thin maxillary pair of barbells is present. The colour is grayish on back becoming silvery on sides and below with spot generally present on each scale. The fins are sometimes black. The fish is very active and feed on aquatic weeds and vegetation. It breeds in July and August and attains a length of 3 feet. It is chiefly used for stocking tanks. It is one of the best fresh water edible fish having well flavoured flesh.
It is common in the rivers, ponds and lakes of Pakistan. (Contributed by: Mr. Muhammad Farooq Ahmed (Director), Zoological Survey Department, Government of Pakistan, Karachi).
To focus world attention on the need to protect and preserve this vulnerable wildlife species Pakistan Postal Services Corporation is issuing a set of four special postage stamps of Rs. 6/- value each depicting beautiful fishes on September 1, 1995. It is part of the series on wildlife stamps being issued by Pakistan Postal Services Corporation since 1975.