This week, a Killifish conservation initiative based in Oaxaca, Mexico, received a £500 grant from Freshwater Life Project for the purpose of reproducing a new species of killifish in captivity as part of a conservation program. The Endemic Killifish Conservation Initiative “Rescando a Profundulus oaxacae“ run by program manager Victor Manuel Ortiz Cruz, has previously been supported by organizations such as the European Union of Aquarium Curators, and the Goodeid Working Group for projects working toward the conservation of freshwater fishes endemic to the Oaxaca Valley, including species such as Profundulus oaxacae, Profundulus mixtlanensis, and Notropis imeldae. Their latest project involves the captive-reproduction of a new species of killifish only described to science in 2021 named Profundulus adani, a species that is only known from the upper reaches of the Papaloapan River in Oaxaca. The species locality represents a new geographic range extension for the family Profundulidae, and is now its northernmost population of Profundulid known. Although the species has not yet been assessed by the IUCN, due to the high level of anthropogenic impact on its natural habitat, and highly localized distribution, it is likely to qualify for endangered or even critically endangered status if and when evaluated.
The Mick Agnew Killifish Conservation Fund was established in honour of longstanding member of the British Killifish Association Mick Agnew, who dedicated much of his life to keeping and understanding Killifish, and specifically aims to support projects producing tangible conservation efforts for killifish species, particularly those with threat statuses or at risk of extinction. With the funding allocated through this grant, the local conservation group will now be able to purchase several large breeding vats, and a variety of aquatic plants to help simulate a suitable environment for breeding. Their efforts will produce the first captive-bred populations of Profundulus adani.