Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Aulopiformes
(Grinners) > Synodontidae
(Lizardfishes) > Synodontinae
Etymology: Trachinocephalus: Greek, trachys, -eia, -ys = rough + Greek, kephale = head (Ref. 45335). More on author: Forster.
Species complex with Trachinocephalus myops formerly cincumtropical is now restricted to the Atlantic Ocean; T. trachinus resurrected for the Indo-West Pacific Ocean; and, <>T. gauguini found in the Marquesas Is. (Ref. 110386). Information in this species record for modification.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range ? - 400 m (Ref. 9710), usually 3 - 90 m (Ref. 4472). Tropical; 40°N - 40°S, 76°W - 154°W
Restricted to Atlantic: W Atlantic Ocean (from Cape Cod, Massachusetts to Brazil, including Bermuda, Bahamas, Antilles and Gulf of Mexico; E Atlantic from Mauritania to Gabon, including Saint Helena and Ascension Islands.
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?, range 19 - ? cm
Max length : 40.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9710); common length : 25.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 5217); max. reported age: 7 years (Ref. 36558)
soft rays: 13 - 18. Snout very short; mouth very oblique; body with alternating narrow dark-edged pale blue and yellow stripes; oblique black spot at the upper end of the gill opening (Ref. 2334). Eye far forward (Ref. 26938).
Found near shore above 40 m over sandy bottoms of deep outer reef slopes (Ref. 11230). Reported to be common in estuaries (Ref. 11228, 48635). Benthic at 3-388 m (Ref. 58302). Rest on or more often burrow into substrate, leaving eyes exposed (Ref. 4472, 48635). When disturbed, it may swim a short distance but quickly buries itself again (Ref. 48635). Feed on fishes (Ref. 5213) and small crustaceans (Ref. 36558).
Polanco, F.A., P.A. Acero and Betancur-R. R., 2016. No longer a circumtropical species: revision of the lizardfishes in the Trachinocephalus myops species complex, with description of a new species from the Marquesas Islands. J. Fish Biol. 89(2):1302-1323. (Ref. 110386)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 118484)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: minor commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 18.9 - 29, mean 27.3 °C (based on 4584 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.7500 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00490 (0.00299 - 0.00801), b=3.42 (3.28 - 3.56), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 4.4 ±0.4 se; based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (K=1.6; tm=2; tmax=7).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate to high vulnerability (46 of 100) .