Genetically distinct Dutch-domesticated Clarias gariepinus used in aquaculture in Southern Africa
Clarias gariepinus, a catfish species widely distributed in Africa including South Africa, is naturally absent from the Western Cape and the coastal Eastern Cape provinces. Because of its potential as an aquaculture species it has been widely used in aquaculture ventures in South Africa, specifically a stock known as Dutch catfish, a domesticated strain developed in the Netherlands. Mitochondrial DNA markers indicate that this stock is genetically distinct from the natural populations of C. gariepinus in South Africa. It could potentially pose a threat to South Africa's natural biodiversity if these fish were to escape from aquaculture farms, or was deliberately introduced into inland waters. © NISC (Pty) Ltd.