Indian Glassy Fish (Parambassis ranga)
The Indian Glassy Fish (Parambassis ranga), also known as Indian Glassfish or Indian X-ray Fish, is a small freshwater fish species belonging to the family Ambassidae. It is native to the rivers and wetlands of the Indian subcontinent, including India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Nepal.
Physical Characteristics: The Indian Glassy Fish has a compressed, laterally flattened body with a relatively large head and a pointed snout. Its most distinctive feature is its semi-transparent body, which allows the internal organs and skeletal structures to be visible. The fish has large, round eyes and a forked caudal fin. Indian Glassy Fish are generally small, reaching a maximum length of about 8 cm.
Habitat and Distribution: The Indian Glassy Fish is found in a variety of freshwater habitats, including rivers, streams, lakes, ponds, and wetlands. It prefers slow-moving or still water with abundant aquatic vegetation, which provides shelter and cover from predators. The fish can tolerate a wide range of water conditions, including brackish water, but is most commonly found in freshwater environments.
Diet and Behavior: The Indian Glassy Fish is an omnivorous species that feeds on a variety of food items, including small invertebrates, zooplankton, aquatic insects, and plant matter. The fish is a schooling species, forming large groups that swim together in a coordinated manner. This schooling behavior provides protection against predators and increases foraging efficiency.
Reproduction: The reproductive habits of the Indian Glassy Fish are not well documented, but it is believed to reproduce through external fertilization. The female releases eggs into the water column, which are then fertilized by the male. The eggs are adhesive and typically attach to aquatic vegetation, where they hatch into larvae after a few days.
Aquarium Trade: The Indian Glassy Fish is popular in the aquarium trade due to its unique appearance and peaceful temperament. It is a hardy species that adapts well to captivity, making it suitable for beginner aquarists. However, it is essential to maintain a proper school size in the aquarium, as the fish can become stressed and more susceptible to disease when kept in small numbers.
Conservation and Challenges: The Indian Glassy Fish is not currently considered threatened or endangered, and its population appears to be stable. However, it faces challenges such as habitat degradation, pollution, and overfishing for the aquarium trade. Conservation efforts should focus on protecting the freshwater ecosystems where this species is found and promoting sustainable fishing practices to ensure the long-term survival of the Indian Glassy Fish.