Protocobitis typhlops

Yang, Chen and Lan 1994

CypriniformesCobitoidei Cobitidae






None of the specimens mentioned in Chen and Yang (1993) are proposed as holotype so all are syntypes. Kottelat and Brehier (1999) clarify the taxonomic status of this species by erecting a lectotype.

Lectotype: KIZ 9180001, 54mm SL. Paralectotypes: KIZ 9180002-7.


Known only from the type locality: A limestone cave at the town of Xiaao, Duan County, Guangxi Province, China (24o15'N, 107o05'E). A cave-dwelling species of Oreonectes is also found in this cave. It has not yet been described (Yang and Chen 1993).


Little detail known. The cave is at the centre of a c. 10000m2 depression which drains internally. The pool in which the fishes were collected is only 12m into cave which is reported to be extensive. No other specimens were taken from other locations in the system. The pool is very clear and still with a rocky substrate. This is clearly only a peripheral part of the real habitat.


The practice of erecting new genera for cave fishes is now generally not supported. However this animal is sufficiently apomorphic that it requires a new genus to contain it. This species is most closely related to Cobitis sinensis and Cobitis arenae, both of which live in the Xijiang drainage area (Yang and Chen 1993).

Conservation Status

TLO MuG [VU D2:2.3:1996]

(Kottelat, M. 1996. Protocobitis typhlops. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 1996: Downloaded on 07 July 2017).

Museum Holdings

As above only.

Key References

Yang, J.X., Chen, Y.R. and Lan, J.H. Journal Article 1994 Protocobitis typhlops, a new genus and species of cave loach from China
Lan, J.H., Gan, X., Wu, T.J. and Yang, J. Book 2013 Cave fishes of Guangxi, China