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Discovery
The Freaky Fishes of the Congo

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Photo of species-rich assemblage of fishes in the lower Congo River.

The lower Congo River is home to a species-rich assemblage of fishes. Many are known only from the region (endemics), and many display bizzare anatomical features such as elongation, pigment loss and reduction or absence of eyes. This image shows a small selection of species found.

Credit: AMNH CongoProject


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Photo of waterfall cascading down the steep cliffs of the lower Congo River.

Numerous waterfalls cascade down the steep cliffs that line the lower Congo River along much of its course to the ocean, some 186 miles (300 kilometers) downstream. The rocks in the foreground are enormous; some are the size of compact cars.

Credit: AMNH CongoProject


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Photo of a large sand bank at the mouth of the Foulakari River.

Large sand banks such as this one at the mouth of the Foulakari River make ideal base camps from where the researchers can venture out onto the lower Congo mainstream.

Credit: AMNH CongoProject


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Photo of a Tiger fish (Hydrocynus vittatus), one of the large predators of the Congo River.

One of the large predators of the river, a Tiger fish (this one is Hydrocynus vittatus), shares the river with its relative, the Giant Tiger fish (Hydrocynus goliath). The Tiger fish can reach up to a meter in length, while the goliath can reach nearly a meter and a half and weigh nearly twice as much.

Credit: AMNH CongoProject


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