Morphology Data of Garra tana
Identification keys
Main Ref. Stiassny, M.L.J. and A. Getahun, 2007
Appearance refers to
Bones in OsteoBase

Sex attributes

Specialized organs
Different appearance
Different colors

Descriptive characteristics of juvenile and adult

Striking features
Body shape lateral elongated
Cross section
Dorsal head profile
Type of eyes
Type of mouth/snout sucker-like
Position of mouth sub-terminal/inferior
Type of scales

Diagnosis: Garra tana is distinguished from African congeners by the following combination of features: very weakly developed disc; between 3 and 5 predorsal scales anterior to dorsal fin; chest, belly, and postpelvic region asquamate; elongate, narrow caudal peduncle, its length 20.4-22.3% of standard length, its depth 7.2-10.0% of standard length; and short intestine (Ref. 58532).

Description: Garra tana is slender and gracile, greatest body depth located well anterior to dorsal-fin origin, at level of pectoral-fin tip (Ref. 58532). Caudal peduncle elongate and narrow (Ref. 58532). Head short; snout prominent, with no tubercles, mouth wide; eyes positioned medially on head, and relatively large (Ref. 58532). Dorsal head profile rises steeply over snout, then more-or-less smoothly convex to dorsal-fin origin (Ref. 58532). Disc very weakly developed and inconspicuous without free posterior margin; rostral cap well-developed, ventrally expanded covering upper jaw and with clearly invecked ventral margin (Ref. 58532). Two pairs of small barbels; rostral pair frequently conspicuous and often longest (Ref. 58532). Either 39 or 40 scales along lateral line; between 3 and 5 predorsal scales anterior to dorsal fin; either 3 or 4 scales from lateral line to origin of pelvic fin; 4-4.5 scales from lateral line to dorsal-fin origin; chest, belly and postpelvic regions asquamate (Ref. 58532). Dorsal fin with iii,7 rays, inserted well anterior to pelvic fin, with subacuminate, third branched ray longest; anal fin with iii,5 rays, with subacuminate tip; pectoral fin with iv,11 rays, its length 16.6-20.2% of standard length, with somewhat pointed tips (Ref. 58532). Predorsal length 39.8-50.0% of standard length (Ref. 58532). Vent located distant from anal fin (Ref. 58532).

Colouration: Body dark dorsally, lighter brown below lateral line and ventrally (Ref. 58532). Head, snout and most of cheek and opercle dark brown; lips, gular region, posterior opercle and branchiostegal membranes pale yellow-brown (Ref. 58532). Dorsal fin membrane with pale cream tip, faint submarginal band of black pigment in membrane between rays, and pale cream proximally; some specimens with faint trace of either 5 or 6 very small black spots between rays in basal membrane of dorsal fin, but in most specimens dorsal-fin spots absent; anal fin uniformly pale creamy yellow; caudal fin pale creamy brown, with median rays a contrasting darker brown; pelvic and pectoral fins uniformly pale creamy brown (Ref. 58532).

Ease of Identification

Meristic characteristics of Garra tana

Lateral Lines Interrupted: No
Scales on lateral line 39 - 40
Pored lateral line scales
Scales in lateral series
Scale rows above lateral line 4 - 4.5
Scale rows below lateral line 3 - 4
Scales around caudal peduncle
Barbels 4
Gill clefts (sharks/rays only)
Gill rakers
on lower limb
on upper limb


Dorsal fin(s)

Attributes no striking attributes
Fins number 1
Finlets No. Dorsal   
Spines total 0 - 0
Soft-rays total 10 - 10
Adipose fin absent

Caudal fin

Attributes forked; more or less normal

Anal fin(s)

Fins number 1
Spines total 0 - 0
Soft-rays total 8 - 8

Paired fins

Pectoral Attributes  more or less normal
Spines     0
Soft-rays   15 - 15
Pelvics Attributes  more or less normal
Position    abdominal  behind origin of D1
Spines     0
Soft-rays   8 - 8
Main Ref. (e.g. 9948)
Glossary ( e.g. cephalopods )
Entered by Boden, Gert
Modified by Boden, Gert
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