Chapila

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Chapila, Gudusia chapra

Chapila a small freshwater fish Gudusia chapra of the family Clupeidae, order Clupeiformes. It is a popular fish because of its taste and easy availability. Moreover, the flesh contains a significant amount of protein, vitamin, calcium, iron, phosphorous, etc.

The fish is silvery and has a dark shoulder and back. It attains a maximum body length of 20 cm. Its mouth is wide and teeth are absent. The tail is elongated and deeply forked. Abdominal profile is sharp and serrated. Dorsal and pelvic fins are short, while the anal fin is long.    

Chapila is a surface feeder, feeds mainly on plankton, and is found in rivers, streams, lakes, beels, ponds, ditches and in inundated fields throughout Bangladesh. It can be easily cultured in confined waters like lakes, ponds, miniponds, etc. It breeds twice in a year; the peak breeding season is June-July. [Md Golam Mustafa]