Lophotus lacepede Giorna, 1809
Crested oarfish
Lophotus lacepede
photo by Ragonese, S.

Family:  Lophotidae (Crestfishes)
Max. size:  200 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  bathypelagic; depth range 0 - 92 m, oceanodromous
Distribution:  Nearly worldwide in warmer seas. Western Atlantic: Florida in USA to Brazil (Ref. 7251). Eastern Atlantic: western Mediterranean, off Portugal, Madeira and off Canary Islands; also South Africa (Ref. 4165). Western Indian Ocean: recently recorded from Reunion (Ref. 53568). Eastern Pacific: southern California, USA (Ref. 6740). Also reported from Australia (Ref. 9563).
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 0-0; Dorsal soft rays (total): 206-263; Anal spines: 0-0; Anal soft rays: 5-20; Vertebrae: 124-153. Head and body silvery in color and possibly with silvery spots; fins red (Ref. 4165).
Biology:  A rare (Ref. 4165), oceanic, mesopelagic species. Occasionally stranded in shallow water (Ref. 9563). Capable of discharging a black ink from an ink-sac in the cloaca when alarmed. Adults feed on fishes (anchovies) and squids (Ref. 6740). Oviparous, with planktonic eggs and larvae (Ref. 36608). Found in stomachs of tunas (Ref. 2850).
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 10 July 2014 Ref. (123251)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   

Entered by: Froese, Rainer - 01.05.91
Modified by: Busson, Frédéric - 02.07.09
Checked by: Agustin, Liza Q. - 05.09.94

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