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Potential impacts of non-native fish on the threatened mahseer (Tor) species of the Indian Himalayan biodiversity hot spot

Gupta, Nishikant; Nautiyal, Prakash; Everard, Mark; Kochhar, Ishaan; Sivakumar, Kuppusamy; Johnson, Jeyaraj Antony; Borgohain, Atul

Authors

Nishikant Gupta

Prakash Nautiyal

Mark Everard Mark.Everard@uwe.ac.uk
Associate Professor in Ecosystem Services

Ishaan Kochhar

Kuppusamy Sivakumar

Jeyaraj Antony Johnson

Atul Borgohain



Abstract

1. Mahseer (Tor) fish species are critical components of locally adapted freshwater food webs across the Indian Himalayan biodiversity hotspot; however, multiple human stressors compounded by climate change have significantly depleted their populations over recent decades.
2. Mahseer species are now considered locally vulnerable or endangered in many regions. Hydropower projects in particular have fragmented populations, impairing genetic exchange, obstructing migratory paths, and changing the structure and functioning of riverine habitats, especially of formerly fast‐flowing rivers.
3. Worryingly, a literature survey and group discussions reveal that the increasing spread of non‐native fish species further compounds threats to mahseer and overall freshwater ecology. A better understanding of the current distribution, habitat requirement, and dispersal of non‐native fish is therefore essential to manage the growing threats to mahseer in the Indian Himalayan region.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Feb 1, 2020
Journal Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems
Print ISSN 1052-7613
Electronic ISSN 1099-0755
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 30
Issue 2
Pages 394-401
APA6 Citation Gupta, N., Nautiyal, P., Everard, M., Kochhar, I., Sivakumar, K., Johnson, J. A., & Borgohain, A. (2020). Potential impacts of non-native fish on the threatened mahseer (Tor) species of the Indian Himalayan biodiversity hot spot. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 30(2), 394-401. https://doi.org/10.1002/aqc.3275
DOI https://doi.org/10.1002/aqc.3275
Keywords anthropogenic stressors; climate change; freshwater; Hindu Kush Himalaya, India; invasive species
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