Freshwater fans can see even more colors of the rainbow in the Rivers of the World gallery’s Fly River exhibit with the addition of new Lake Tebera Rainbowfish (Melanotaenia herbertaxelrodi, also known as Yellow Rainbowfish) and Neon Rainbowfish (Melanotaenia praecox).
The Lake Tebera Rainbowfish is found in the Lake Tebera Basin on New Guinea, the world’s second largest island, just north of Australia. There, they prefer the heavily vegetated waters of highland lakes and streams in Papua New Guinea’s mountains.
The Neon Rainbowfish is a dwarf rainbowfish also known as the Diamond Rainbowfish, Praecox Rainbowfish or Peacock Rainbowfish. It can be found in Western New Guinea in the tropical waters of the Mamberamo River Basin.
Fig. 2 A Neon Rainbowfish in the Fly River exhibit (Melanotaenia praecox)
Also recently added to Rivers of the World, look for two new Paradise Gouramis (Macropodus opercularis) palling around with the Gold Barbs and Hillstream Loaches in the gallery’s Chinese Mountain Stream exhibit. These blue-and-red cousins of the Kapuas River’s Three Spot Gouramis are found in numerous tropical river basins throughout China, Taiwan, Vietnam and Korea.
Fig. 3 A Paradise Gourami (Macropodus opercularis) in the Chinese Mountain Stream exhibit
Gouramis possess an adaptation that allows them to survive in shallow, slow-moving bodies of water like rice fields and marshes, which often lack an adequate concentration of oxygen. They use a labyrinth organ to take breaths of air from the water’s surface occasionally.