Fish fauna of the Kumaon Hills

M.C. Pant ; Government Degree College, Gopeshwar, U.P.

Table of Contents (ToC)

  1. Introduction
  2. Localities surveyed
  3. Systematic list of species
  4. Summary
  5. References


The Kumaon lakes are of considerable importance for fishing as well as entertainment. Angling is very popular here and provides ,good sport but our knowledge about the fish fauna of Kumaon hills is scanty. Day (1878, 1889) was the first to undertake the scientific survey of the fishes of lndia and published his work in two volumes. Walker (1888) recorded five species from the Nainital lake. Hora (1937 a, b, c ) recorded seventeen species of fishes belonging to different families from Kumaon hills. His collections were mainly from lower waters of Nandhaur and Kalaunia rivers and from Kosi river near Khairna. Menon (1949a,b) gave a list of twentythree species of fishes from the lake and rivulets of Nainital. He also collected fishes from Kosi river (Khairna) and from Almora proper. Menon (1954, 1962) published a long list of fishes from the Himalayas. This is based on a collection from Assam Himalayas , Nepal Himalayas , Punjab Himalayas and Kumaon Himalayas .

As the fish fauna so far described from the Kumaon Himalayas is mainly from Nainital district, it was considered desirable to make an extensive collection from Almora and Pithoragarh districts of this region ( Table 1 ). The fishes were collected during the period 1963-64 and were brought to the Zoological Laboratories of this College for identification. The present paper also includes a brief report on the methods employed by the local people for catching fishes.


Localities surveyed

The following localities were not easily accessible in the, past due to which an account of the fish fauna of this area is not available. An extension of the transport facilities to these hilly areas helped in the collection of fishes from these places for the first time
River in Almora District Place of collection Elevation above sea level (Meters)
1. Sarju Bageshwar 1579
2. Western Ram Ganga Chaukhutia 976
Bhikiasan 1036
3. Kosi Someshwar 1066
Hawalbagh 1194
4. Garur Ganga Garur (Baijnath) 1080
5. Gomati Bageshwar 1579
Garur (Baijnath) 1080
6. Lohawati Lohaghat 1679
7. Gagas Gagas 975
8. Suyal Almora 1584

River in Pithoragarh District Place of collection Elevation above sea level (Meters)
1. Dhauli Tawaghat 914
2. Kali Dharchula 914
Balua Koat 1066
Jauljibi 890
3. Gori Jauljibi 890
4. Eastern Ram Ganga Thal 1066
Gangolihat 1584
Rameshwar Ghat 1036
5. Charma Gar Askote 1219
6. Small Ponds at Berinag 1554
at Barechina 1993
at Gangolihat 1584


Systematic list of species

[ ... ]

Channa gachua (Hamilton)

Local Name . - Shoyn.

Specimens examined . - 11 specimens, from Almora and Pithoragarh districts, 75 mm. to 153 mm. in standard length.

Distribution . - Freshwaters of East Punjab, Western and Eastern Himalayas, Assam, Orissa, Travancore, Madras, Bombay, Poona, West Bengal, Delhi and U.P.. This is the first record from Pithoragarh district.

[ ... ]



All extensive collection of fishes was made from Almora and Pithoragarh districts of the Kumaon hills during the year 1963-64. In all twenty-nine species from Almora district and twenty-three from Pithoragarh were collected and identified. The places visited for collection have been indicated. A brief account of the methods employed by the local people for catching fishes has been given.




Acknowledgement and Source(s)

This text was originally published under the above title in: Records of the Indian Museum . Vol. 39, pp. 338 - 348, in the year 1937. The copyright owner Zoological Survey of India has granted the right to publish it on the org's site. The copyright of text is still with the owner in full amount.

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