Mrigal carp: Cirrhinus cirrhosus
Mrigal carp: Cirrhinus cirrhosus


Cyprinus cirrhosus: Bloch, 1975.

Cirrhina cirrhosa: Day, 1878. 1889; Macdonald, 1944.

Cyprinus mrigala: Hamilton, 1822; Bhyiyan, 1964, Shaw and Shebbeare, 1937.


Common name: Cauvery white carp (English name)

Bangla name: Mirga, Mirgel, Mrigala, Mirka


Taxonomic position:

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Osteichthyes

Order: Cypriniformes

Family: Cyprinidae

Sub family: Cyprininae

Genus: Cirrhinus

Species: Cirrhinus cirrhosus 


Morphological description:

Dorsal profile is more convex than that of abdomen whereas ventral profile nearly straight or only slightly convex. Body is elongate and its depth is more than length of head. Snout not projecting beyond mouth, generally with some fine pores. Mouth is broad, lower lip is fairly thick, upper lip is entire. Barbells are well-developed, among them rostral pair longer than maxillary barbells. In life body colour is silvery on back and flanks; belly dull yellowish-white; each scale of flanks with a red centre. On the other hand, dorsal and caudal fins dusky; tips of anal and pectoral fins blackish (Rahman, 2005 and Talwar and Jhingran, 2001).


Fin formula:

D. 3-4/12-13, P1.1/17-18, P2.1/8, A. 3/5.

D. 3-4/13-15, P1. 1/18, P2. 1/8, A. 3/5 (Talwar and Jhingran, 2001)

D. 3-4/13-15, P1. 1/18, P2. 1/8, A. 3/5 (Rahman, 2005)

D. 3/12-13, P1. 15, P2. 9, A. 3/5 (Bhuiyan, 1964)


Scales number on the lateral line series is 40 to 44. Minimum and maximum value of scales number above the lateral line is 6 and 7 respectively. Minimum and maximum value of scales number below the lateral line is 5 and 6 respectively. Scales number mentioned by other writers are as follows, 40-43 scales on the lateral line series (Rahman, 2005), 35-45 scales on the lateral line series (Talwar and Jhingran, 2001).


Habit and habitat:

Its food comprises crustaceous and insect larvae in early stages (Mookerjee et al. 1946). Available in Bangladesh and ponds, rivers, rivulets are the main habitats (Bhuiyan, 1964).


Breeding time:

Breeding time is rainy season. According to Bhuiyan (1964) this species breeds in shallow water in the rainy season.


Economic importance:

This is a testy and important fish of the landed fish from culture media from rivers and beels. It provides a respected amount of fish protein (Shafi and Quddus, 1982).


Ecological role:

This fish is bottom dweller and detrivorous. The nature of this fish is searching decomposition matter of the bottom as a food. As a result, it reduces water pollution and increase water quality (Bhuiyan, 1964).


Marketing status:

Market price is varied between 110-120 Tk/kg.




Bhuiyan, A.L. 1964. Fishes of Dacca. Asiatic Soc. Pakistan, Publ. No. 13, Dacca. p. 28.

Bloch, M.E. and Schneider, J.G. 1795. Naturages ausland Fische, Systema Ichthyologiae. 6: p. 52.

Day, F. 1878. Fishes of India. William Dowson and Sons., London.  p. 547.

Day, F. 1889. Fishes. Fauna. Brit. India. William Dowson and Sons., London. 1-2: p. 277.

Macdonald, 1944. J. Bombay nat. Hist. Soc. 44: p. 535.

Rahman, A.K.A. 2005. Freshwater Fishes of Bangladesh. The Zoological Society of Bangladesh, Dhaka. p. 123.

Shaw, G.E. and Shebbeare, E.O. 1937. Fishes of Northern Bengal. J. Royal Asiat. Soc. Bengal Science. p. 45.

Shafi, M. and Quddus, M.M.A. 1982. Bangladesher Matshaw Sampod (in Bengali). Bangla Academy. Dhaka. pp. 72-73.

Talwar, P.K. and Jhingran, A.G. 2001. Inland Fishes of India and Adjacent countries. Oxford and IBH Publishing Co. Pvt. Ltd. New Delhi. p. 169.

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Mrigal carp: Cirrhinus cirrhosus

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Ismat Ara Zakia

Ex-student, Department of Fisheries, University of Rajshahi, Rajshahi-6205, Bangladesh. More...

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