Alepisaurus ferox Lowe, 1833
Long snouted lancetfish
Alepisaurus ferox
photo by Chow, S.

Family:  Alepisauridae (Lancetfishes)
Max. size:  215 cm TL (male/unsexed); max.weight: 9,000.0 g
Environment:  bathypelagic; depth range 0 - 1830 m, oceanodromous
Distribution:  Circumglobal: Western Pacific (Ref. 6885, 7300); Eastern Pacific: from the Aleutian Islands to Chile, also (Ref. 2850); Western Atlantic: Gulf of Maine to the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea, also (Ref. 7251); Eastern Atlantic (Ref. 4059). Indian Ocean (Ref. 57630). Northwest Atlantic: Canada (Ref. 5951). South China Sea and East China Sea (Ref. 74511).
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 0-0; Dorsal soft rays (total): 30-45; Anal spines: 0-0; Anal soft rays: 13-18; Vertebrae: 47-52. Mouth large with two erect fangs on palatines. Dorsal fin very high, about three rays beginning with third or fourth much exerted; adipose moderate in size, over posterior part of anal insertion (Ref. 6885). Generally pale, iridescent, darker dorsally; lateral adipose keel dark; all fins dark brown or black; peritoneum black (Ref. 6885). Branchiostegal rays: 7-8 (Ref. 36025).
Biology:  Mainly inhabit tropical and subtropical waters; however, during the feeding period adults may migrate to the subarctic reaching as far north as Greenland, Iceland and the Bering Sea (Ref. 51887). Epipelagic- and mesopelagic, from near the surface to below 1,000 m, sometimes approaching inshore waters (Ref. 6011). Bathypelagic (Ref. 58302). Mainly nocturnal. Feed on fishes, cephalopods, tunicates, and crustaceans (Ref. 6011). Preyed upon by opah, sharks, albacore, yellowfin tuna, and fur seals (Ref. 6885). Oviparous, with planktonic larvae (Ref. 36025). Are synchronous hermaphrodites (Ref. 84733). Occasionally consumed but of little importance due to its soft flesh (Ref. 5217). The maximum weight given is for a 167 cm FL specimen (Ref. 42154).
IUCN Red List Status: (Ref. 115185)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   
 

Entered by: Froese, Rainer - 17.10.90
Modified by: Luna, Susan M. - 30.07.10
Checked by: Froese, Rainer - 23.03.94

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