Oceanic Anglerfishes: Extraordinary Diversity in the Deep Sea

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University of California Press, 2009 - Science - 557 pages
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"In the realm of ichthyological literature, it would be hard to find more fascinating creatures than the football fishes, pugnose dreamers, mischievous dreamers, and snaggletooth seadevils, (not to mention triplewart, needlebeard, and whipnose seadevils), but they're all here in Oceanic Anglerfishes. In this comprehensive study, you will learn that most of the species are smaller than your hand; most have a bioluminescent lure that may be employed to attract prey into gobbling range; and that the relatively tiny males affix themselves to the females, assuring permanent sexual contact in the blackness of the depths. This is a brilliantly illuminated viewing port into the world of deep-sea creatures, bringing into sharp focus fishes whose weird appearance, habits, and lifestyles stretch the imagination to the point of near unbelievability."--Richard Ellis, author of The Book of Sharks and Encyclopedia of the Sea

"Ceratioid anglerfishes are classical deep-sea fishes that display a vast array of bizarre and wonderful behaviors and associated morphological adaptations that are almost beyond our ability to imagine. Their first dorsal fin spine has been modified into a fishing rod (the illicium) ending in a fleshy bait (the esca) and they show extreme sexual dimorphism with tiny males with huge nostrils and modified pincer-like jaws to attach themselves to a female, sometimes permanently. Ted Pietsch describes in great detail the 11 families, 35 genera, and 160 known species of deep-sea anglerfishes in his splendidly illustrated monograph based on research that began with finding the first ceratioid washed ashore in Greenland in 1833 and continues through Pietsch's 40-year career of studying these fascinating fishes."--Bruce B. Collette, National Marine Fisheries Service Systematics Laboratory, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution
 

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Contents

THE BIOLOGY OF DEEPSEA ANGLERFISHES
1
Introduction and Historical Perspective
3
What Makes an Anglerfish?
23
Biodiversity
51
Evolutionary Relationships
173
Geographic Distribution
197
Bioluminescence and Luring
229
Locomotion Food and Feeding
253
Introduction
313
Families Genera and Species of the Ceratioidei
319
REALLOCATION OF NOMINAL SPECIES OF THE CERATIOIDEI BASED ON FEMALES
511
REALLOCATION OF NOMINAL SPECIES OF THE CERATIOIDEI BASED ON FREELIVING MALES
519
SYMBOLIC CODES FOR INSTITUTIONAL COLLECTIONS
521
GLOSSARY
523
REFERENCES
527
ILLUSTRATION CREDITS
543

Reproduction and Early Life History
277
A CLASSIFICATION OF DEEPSEA ANGLERFISHES
309

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About the author (2009)

Theodore W. Pietsch is Dorothy T. Gilbert Professor in the College of Ocean and Fishery Sciences, and Curator of Fishes at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, University of Washington.

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