Keywords: Conservation units, Fish diversity, Ornamental fishery, Sustainable management.ABSTRACT
The Xingu River has one of the most diverse fish faunas in the Amazon region. Loricariidae stands out as the most diverse family in the basin, comprising more than 60 species distributed over 26 genera. Species of Loricariidae are some of the most economically valued in the ornamental market worldwide. The loss of fishing environments in Altamira region due to dam impacts is driving a shift of ornamental fishing to areas upstream, among which are included the Xingu River and Iriri River Extractive Reserve Areas. Thus, the objective of this work was to inventory fish species with ornamental potential in these extractive reserves to serve as a baseline to help guide the future management of ornamental fishing in those areas. Thirty-two species of Loricariidae were collected in these reserves through either free diving or diving with compressed air. The composition of species varied according to the sampling method and area. The majority of species found in the reserves are also found in the impacted areas of Belo Monte near Altamira. The study areas showed high diversity of fish species in rapids environments, suggesting that this area could serve as an additional source of income for the residents of these reserves.