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#ThreatenedThursday: Lake Eacham Rainbowfish

#ThreatenedThursday: Lake Eacham Rainbowfish

October 14, 2021


SPECIES: Melanotaenia eachamensis — Lake Eacham Rainbowfish

CLASSIFICATION: Endangered


For the Lake Eacham Rainbowfish, endemic to Lake Eacham in north-east Queensland, survival has been tough to say the least. In the 1980s several species of larger fish, predatory to the Rainbowfish, were introduced to the Lake and soon enough the species was all but wiped out. Remarkably, it was rediscovered and intuitively, it seems the species had expanded its home range into neighbouring river systems.


The Lake Eacham Rainbowfish is listed as endangered both nationally and on the worldwide IUCN Red List. They are generally silvery blue in colour and are a schooling species of fish preferring shallow water with not a huge flow. Certainly under threat largely from predation by other fish as well as habitat degradation, as they do tend to prefer hanging about in shallow water along the shoreline and quite often amongst the safe confines of aquatic vegetation.


Photo: Martin F Gomo