This species is distinguished from other siluriform
species by the following set of characters: viz. no
dorsal fin; anal fin with long base and completely
confluent with caudal fin; 70-74 total number of fin
rays in the anal and caudal fins; subcutaneous eyes;
upwardly directed mouth with distinctly projecting
lower jaw; fan-like pectoral fin, no spines; 4 pairs
of barbels. Habitat: Occurs in subterranean
streams. Observed to inhabit an open water body, over
the paddy fields and water sources feeding paddy fields.
Found mainly hiding between submerged vegetation present
on the sides of the water body. Specimens collected
from 5.5-m-deep well containing water where it is
situated on the slope of a hilly terrain and receives
water from groundwater springs, subterranean.
Reproduction: Female individuals (4.95-5.44
cm SL) collected had distended bellies containing
mature eggs. Diet: In the laboratory,
the fishes thrive on Artemia nauplii and minced earthworms.
Etymology: The specific name shajii
Named for C.P. Shaji, a fish taxonomist who significantly
contributed to the documentation of freshwater fish
diversity of the Kerala region of Western Ghats by
the Kerala Forest Research Institute (KFRI Peechi).
Indian cave catfish
Ghats in Kerala, India.
Binoy, V,V,, K.S. Roshan
and V.B. Rakesh, 2012. Occurrence of Kryptoglanis
shajii, an enigmatic subterranean-spring catfish (Siluriformes,
Incertae sedis) in the channels of paddy fields. Current
Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2023. FishBase.
World Wide Web electronic publication. www.fishbase.org,
( 02/2023 ). Vincent, M. and J. Thomas, 2011.
Kryptoglanis shajii, an enigmatic subterranean-spring
catfish (Siluriformes, Incertae sedis) from Kerala,
India. Ichthyol. Res. 58(2):161-165.