Blue Mountains Perch, Macquaria sp. nov. 'Hawkesbury'


A Blue Mountains Perch, Macquaria sp. nov., from a creek in the the Blue Mountains, New South Wales. Source: Jim Vaughan / Atlas of Living Australia. License: CC BY Attribution

Summary:
A small Macquaria species with  greyish-brown, buff and dark grey blotches on the head and body. 
This undescribed species is found only in the Hawkesbury-Nepean catchment of New South Wales.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Macquaria sp. nov. 'Hawkesbury' in Fishes of Australia, accessed 04 Jun 2020, http://136.154.202.208/Home/species/5544

Blue Mountains Perch, Macquaria sp. nov. 'Hawkesbury'

More Info


Distribution

Hawkesbury-Nepean River systems. Fragmented populations are restricted to the mid-reaches of small near pristine streams, at elevations of 35-420 m asl, mostly commonly at 100-175 m asl. Historically the species was more widespread, and has disappeared from areas such as the upper Kowmung River, Wollondilly River, and approximately 80 km of the Nepean River between the Bargo River junction and Penrith weir.
Occurs in complex boulder habitats near pristine, clear streams in rugged gorges, with minimal sediment and nutrient loads, and little or no instream vegetation.

Features

 It is generally solitary, swimming near the bottom or mid-water. It may form small shoals during the breeding season, which includes February to March (A. Bruce unpublished data), distinct from Murray-Darling M. australasica populations which spawn October to December (Cadwallader and Rogan 1977, Koehn and O'Connor 1990, Tonkin et al. 2018). The spawning habitat preference of this species is unknown, but is likely to be over rocky substrate.  Hawkesbury-Nepean fish have a smaller maximum size (largest recorded is 229 mm, commonly 100-180 mm), and are slower growing than M. australasica. Hawkesbury-Nepean fish 180-229 mm have been aged at six to 20 years old (A. Bruce unpublished data).

Biology

This solitary species swims near the bottom or in mid-water, and may form small shoals during the February to March (inclusive) breeding season.

Remarks

This species usually occurs upstream of Australian Bass populations.

Author

Bray, D.J. 2020

Blue Mountains Perch, Macquaria sp. nov. 'Hawkesbury'

References


Allen, G.R., Midgley, S.H. and Allen, M. 2002. Field guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Australia. Western Australian Museum, Perth.

Baumgartner, M.F. & Reynoldson, N. 2007. Fish communities of the Nepean River in the vicinity of Pheasants Nest Weir. NSW Department of Primary Industries Fisheries Research Report Series 15.

Bruce, A.M., Knight, J. & Creese, B. 2007. Survey of aquatic threatened species Macquarie perch (Macquaria australasica) and Adams’ emerald dragonfly (Archaeophya adamsi) within the Hawkesbury-Nepean catchment. NSW DPI report to Hawkesbury-Nepean CMA.    

Faulks, L.K., Gilligan, D.M. & Beheregaray, L.B. 2010. Evolution and maintenance of divergent lineages in an endangered freshwater fish, Macquaria australasica. Conservation Genetics 11: 921-934.  

Faulks, L.K., Gilligan, D.M. & Beheregaray, L.B. 2011. The role of anthropogenic vs. natural in-stream structures in determining connectivity and genetic diversity in an endangered freshwater fish, Macquarie perch (Macquaria australasica). Evolutionary Applications 4: 589-601.

Gilligan, D. & Bruce, A. 2019. Macquaria sp. nov. 'Hawkesbury'. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019: e.T128972817A128972820. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-3.RLTS.T128972817A128972820.en. Downloaded on 22 May 2020.

Humphries, P. & Walker, K. (eds) 2013. Ecology of Australian Freshwater Fishes.Collingwood, Victoria : CSIRO Publishing 423 pp.

Pavlova, A., Beheregaray, L.B., Coleman, R., Gilligan, D.M., Harrisson, K.A., Ingram, B.A., Kearns, J., Lamb, A.M., Lintermans, M., Lyon, J., Nguyen, T., Sasaki, M., Tonkin, Z., Yen, J.D.L. & Sunnucks, P. 2017. Severe consequences of habitat fragmentation on genetic diversity of an endangered Australian freshwater fish: a call for assisted gene flow. Evolutionary Applications 10(6): 531-550. https://doi.org/10.1111/eva.12484

Quick Facts


Conservation:IUCN Vulnerable

Habitat:Freshwater streams

Max Size:23 cm TL

Native:Endemic

Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map