Kerala's fish varieties to get Malayalam names

Thiruvananthapuram, Sep 25 (IANS) The 250-odd types of freshwater fish found in Kerala will soon get Malayalam names.

Scientists, naturalists and local fishermen in Kerala will come together Sep 30 for a daylong workshop -- 'Meeninu Oru Peru' (A name for every fish) -- organised by the Kerala State Biodiversity Board (KSBB) and the Department of Aquatic Biology of the Kerala University.

'Use of several vernacular names, including many misnomers, often pose great difficulty in documenting fish, especially as we are in the process of preparing biodiversity registers for all the village bodies,' says R.V. Varma, chairman of KSBB.

The Western Ghats region of Kerala, which is also a global freshwater biodiversity hotspot, is rich in endemism of freshwater fishes. Mushi, Braal and Thillopia are some of the famous fish types found in the state's 44 rivers.

'We expect to finalise the names after considering the present names and looking into the features of the fish, especially their shape, colour and behaviour pattern,' KSBB member secretary K.P. Lala Das told IANS.