By Dr. A. L. Val, Dr. V. M. F. de Almeida-Val (auth.)

The Amazon is a huge piece of "amphibian" land that is the results of advanced geological and evolutionary strategies. The variety of residing beings in the sort of land is tough to estimate. The interactions among those organ­ isms and the surroundings are interesting yet slightly understood. those gains lured us to the Amazon in 1981. even though, quickly after, we learned that the scale of those interactions have been overwhelming. This e-book is designed to check features of the body structure and biochemistry of fishes of the Amazon. the outline of the pulsative nature of our environment and the specified gains of the ichthyofauna of the Amazon have been relevant to the most aim. however, any entire view is proscribed via the importance of the intraspecific variability coupled with the complicated fluctuations of our environment. therefore, now we have put an emphasis on respiration body structure and biochemistry. The reference record was once made as entire as attainable, rather concerning distinctive courses no longer available. we are hoping that this e-book comes in handy for comparative physiologists, tropical biologists, and the folks attracted to interactions among organ­ isms and their surroundings. we're thankful to many of us who contributed to the making of this booklet. Our preliminary principles have been encouraged by means of Drs. Arno Schwantes, Maria Lufza Schwantes, Jose Tundisi, Anna Emflia Vazzoler, and Naercio Menezes.

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Floating macrophytes, roots, tree branches, leaves, fruits, etc. are, as emphasized before, the main sources of detritus in the Amazon basin. As the water retreats, most of these materials are accumulated in the small lakes and close to the margins of the rivers providing food for detritivorous fish. Santos (1991), studying feeding behaviour of some species in the Jamari basin, observed a significant increase in the number of curimatids in the lake during low water season. Almost all interactions among living beings and between them and the environment in the Amazon basin are shaped by water level oscillations.

As the water begins to rise, another movement takes place from the lake to the river, this time clearly for spawning purposes. Although some species spawn in the connecting canal (Petry 1989) most of them migrate upstream in the main river to spawn in other areas. While migration between floodplain lakes and rivers covers a few hundred metres or a few kilometres, those directed from the headwaters of "black" and "clear" water rivers to "white" water rivers cover distances ranging from several hundred kilometers up to a few thousands kilometres.

2 Ostariophysi The Ostariophysi is the most dominant group of freshwater fishes in the world. The formation of the Weberian apparatus, a modification of four or more anterior vertebrae which connect the swim bladder to the inner ear for sound transmission, appears to be the unique characteristic which is shared by all members of this group. However, even though this modification provides the ostariophysans with greater hearing abilities, it is not well understood how the Weberian apparatus would have contributed to the success of the group.

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