Patterns of diversity and conservation status of freshwater fishes in the tributaries of Ramganga river, in the Shiwaliks of the Western Himalaya.
A short study was undertaken from December 2004 to April 2005, to assess the species diversity and composition of freshwater fishes in three tributaries of Ramganga river in the foothills of Western Himalaya. One tributary was within a protected area (PA; Corbett National Park); the other two were outside the PA (Lansdowne Forest Division). Cast nets were used for fish sampling, which was done from 9.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. In total, 43 species belonging to eight families and five orders were recorded which included 29 species belonging to the threatened category. Family Cyprinidae was represented by the maximum number of species. Species richness and diversity was high in the PA. Similarity in fish composition varied from 60% to 70% across the tributaries. Dynamiting, poisoning and diverting water flows to collect fish are the major threats. Creating awareness, controlling illegal fishing and protecting the breeding grounds of fishes are some of the measures recommended to counter these threats.