Morphology Data of Latimeria chalumnae
Identification keys
Main Ref. Bruton, M.N., 1991
Appearance refers to Male; Female
Bones in OsteoBase

Sex attributes

Specialized organs
Different appearance
Different colors
Remarks

Descriptive characteristics of juvenile and adult

Striking features
Body shape lateral fusiform / normal
Cross section
Dorsal head profile
Type of eyes more or less normal
Type of mouth/snout more or less normal
Position of mouth terminal
Diagnosis

This species have the following characters: D VIII+30-31; A 27-31; P 29-32; V 29-33; C 20-25/35-38/21-22; LL 94-104; gills 4; gill rakers replaced by spiny tooth-plates. Head naked, the opercular bones exposed; gill cover expanded posteriorly and ventrally as a thick flap of skin; lower jaw with two large, overlapping gular plates; teeth conical, set on bony plates attached to palatines, ectopterygoids, and dentaries; maxilla absent (the structure at the side of the upper jaw that appears to be a maxillary bone is a thick fold of skin connecting the upper jaw to the rear of the lower jaw). Swim bladder elongate, filled with fat; intestine with spiral valve; osmoregulation involves retention of urea and trimethylamine oxide in the blood, but urea is not resorbed by the kidneys and excess salts are excreted by the rectal gland. In adults the brain is incredibly small, occupying only about 1% of the cranial cavity; but in the smallest juveniles, the brain completely fills the cranial cavity. Color in life: dark metallic blue, the head and body covered with irregular white or pale bluish spots. After death, the bluish color fades to dark brownish black.

Ease of Identification easy to distinguish from other species.

Meristic characteristics of Latimeria chalumnae

Lateral Lines 1 Interrupted: No
Scales on lateral line 76 - 82
Pored lateral line scales
Scales in lateral series
Scale rows above lateral line
Scale rows below lateral line
Scales around caudal peduncle
Barbels 0
Gill clefts (sharks/rays only)
Gill rakers
on lower limb
on upper limb
total
Vertebrae
preanal
total

Fins

Dorsal fin(s)

Attributes other
Fins number 2
Finlets No. Dorsal   0 - 0
Ventral  0 - 0
Spines total 8 - 8
Soft-rays total 30 - 31
Adipose fin absent

Caudal fin

Attributes more or less truncate

Anal fin(s)

Fins number 1
Spines total 0 - 0
Soft-rays total 27 - 31

Paired fins

Pectoral Attributes  more or less normal
Spines     0
Soft-rays   29 - 32
Pelvics Attributes  other (see diagnosis)
Position    abdominal  behind origin of D1
Spines     0
Soft-rays   29 - 33
Main Ref. (e.g. 9948)
Glossary ( e.g. cephalopods )
Entered by Froese, Rainer
Modified by Capuli, Estelita Emily
Checked by Froese, Rainer
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cfm script by eagbayani, 17.10.00, php script by rolavides, 13/03/08 ,  last modified by cmilitante, 19/11/2012