Neoceratias spinifer Pappenheim, 1914
Spiny seadevil
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Family:  Neoceratiidae (Toothed seadevils)
Max. size:  6 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  demersal; marine; depth range 0 - 1200 m
Distribution:  Western Central Pacific.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal soft rays (total): 10-13; Anal soft rays: 10-13. Metamorphosed females distinguished by the following characteristics: lacks illicium and second cephalic spine, as well as cranial trough, within which pterygiophore of illicium lies in all other female ceratioids; broad and roughly rectangular shaped frontals; absence of metapterygoid and mesopterygoid; usually short and nearly straight preopercle; usually thick and well developed premaxillae and dentaries, with rounded edges; presence of a pair of prominent nasal papillae on snout; inner margin of jaws bearing single inner row of small immobile teeth; outer margin bears 2-3 series of long hinged teeth, each with tiny distal hook; dorsal and anal fins mounted on prominent bases; presence of supraethmoid; frontals without ventromedial extensions, meet on midline; presence of parietals; conical shaped sphenotics, without distal spine; presence of pterosphenoid; hyomandibula with single head; 2 hypohyals and 6 (2+4), rarely 5 (1+4), branchiostegal rays; bifuctaed and very much reduced opercle; reduced subopercle, long and narrow, as long as or slightly longer than lower fork of opercle, without posterior notch; ventral part without spine or projection on anterior margin; quadrate, articular, angular and preopercular spines absent; jaws subequal, lower extending anteriorly beyond upper; lower jaw lacking symphisial spine; absence postmaxillary process of premaxilla and anterior-maximandibular ligament; absence of first, second and fourth pharyngobranchial, third is well developed and toothed; single ossified hypobranchial; absence of ossified basibranchials; absence of epibranchial and ceratobranchial; epurals absent; deeply notched posterior margin of hypural plate; pterygiophore of illicium fully embedded in skin of head; esca absent; coracoid lacking posteroventral process; 3 pectoral radials; small and cylindrical pelvic bones, without distal expansion; dorsal fin rays 10-13; anal fin rays 10-13; pectoral fin rays 12-15; pelvic fins absent (Ref. 86949).
Biology:  Meso- (Ref 58302) and bathypelagic (Ref. 7300, 75154). Females with long movable teeth outside jaws. Mature males parasitic on females.
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 16 July 2014 Ref. (124695)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   
 

Entered by: Binohlan, Crispina B. - 26.07.91
Modified by: OrtaƱez, Auda Kareen - 10.09.08
Checked by: Froese, Rainer - 13.06.94

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