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Free Content A Larva of the Atlantic Flashlight Fish, Kryptophanaron Alfredi (Beryciformes: Anomalopidae), with a Comparison of Beryciform and Stephanoberyciform Larvae

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The first wildcaught larva of a flashlight fish is described from a single specimen of Kryptophanaron alfredi, 6.2 mm NL, collected with a midwater trawl in the Tongue of the Ocean, Bahamas. The larva lacks light organs, but an antrorse projection on each side of the snout represents at least the stalk of an incipient light organ. Other distinguishing features of larval Kryptophanaron include an elongate, heavily pigmented pelvic fin; a patch of pigment on and between the anteriormost dorsal-fin spines; numerous melanophores covering the head and trunk (but conspicuously absent on the caudal peduncle); prominent head spines and spiny scales. The distribution of head spines among larvae of major acanthomorph lineages is confusing phylogenetically, and larval specializations do not help resolve current controversy about “beryciform” monophyly. Larval morphology provides some support for a close relationship between the Berycidae and other berycoid families and corroborates hypotheses based on adult characters that: Anoplogastridae, Diretmidae, Anomalopidae, Trachichthyidae, and Monocentridae form a natural assemblage; anoplogastrids and diretmids are sister taxa; and trachichthyoids (anomalopids, trachichthyids, and monocentrids) are monophyletic. Larval features highlight a need to reassess relationships among trachichthyoids.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 1995

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  • The Bulletin of Marine Science is dedicated to the dissemination of high quality research from the world's oceans. All aspects of marine science are treated by the Bulletin of Marine Science, including papers in marine biology, biological oceanography, fisheries, marine affairs, applied marine physics, marine geology and geophysics, marine and atmospheric chemistry, and meteorology and physical oceanography.
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