Compiler and date details
16 May 2015 - Dianne J. Bray & Douglass F. Hoese
Members of the Lophiiformes, commonly known as anglerfishes, are marine and are mostly confined to the deep sea. They are characterised by the modification of the first dorsal-fin spine into a fishing lure on the head.
Classification of the group based on morphological characters is treated in Pietsch (1984, 2005), and Pietsch & Grobecker (1987), who recognised five suborders: Ogcocephaloidei, Ceratioidei, Chaunacoidei, Antennarioidei and Lophioidei. Nelson (2006) recognised three suborders: Lophioidei. Antennarioidei and Ogocephalioidei (Ogocephaloidei, Chaunacoidei and Ceratioidei of Pietsch). A number of recent molecular studies agree with the above higher classification, and have increased our understanding of phylogenetic relationships within the order. Shedlock et al. (2004) analysed sequences of the mitochondrial gene 16S to compare morphological hypotheses of lophiiform relationships and better understand lophiiform life histories. Miya et al. (2010) analysed whole mitochondrial genome sequences from 39 lophiiforms representing the five suborders and 17 of the 18 lophiiform families. Pietsch (1999 a&b) treated lophiiform species that occur in the Western Central Pacific.
The suborders are not treated separately here. Pietsch, however, included the families in the various suborders as follows: the Lophioidei with Lophiidae; the Antennarioidei with four families – Antennariidae, Brachionichthyidae, Lophichthyidae and Tetrabrachiidae; the Ogocephaloidei with Ogcocephalidae; the Chaunacoidei with Chaunacidae; and the Ceratioidei with the remaining families.
The deepsea anglerfishes placed in the suborder Ceratioidei were reviewed on a worldwide basis by Bertelsen (1951). Bertelsen & Pietsch (1983) reviewed and figured the Australian species of eight families of deepsea anglers. Some 130 species of ceratioid anglers are known worldwide; 33 species have been recorded from Australian waters. Many are treated in Anderson & Leslie (2001). Bertelsen (1984), Pietsch (1984) and Pietsch & Orr (2007), who discussed relationships. All ceratioid families and species are treated in extraordinary detail in Pietsch (2009). Adult deepsea anglers are found in the midwaters of all major oceans at depths from 500 m to below 3000 m, with most found below 1000 m. A strong sexual dimorphism is present in the group, with the females being much longer than the dwarfed males. All, but Neoceratias have the first ray of the dorsal fin modified as a 'fishing lure/rod' (illicium) over the mouth; in all but the Caulophrynidae the illicium is tipped with a luminous body, the esca. The ceratioids lack pelvic fins and scales, although spines or prickles may be present, and most are black in colour. The tiny ceratioid males lack the illicium and, with large pincer-like teeth, appear to be adapted to feeding on the females.
Bertelsen, E. 1951. The ceratioid fishes ontogeny, taxonomy, distribution and biology. Dana Reports 39: 1-276 figs 1-141 1 pl.
Bertelsen, E. 1984. Ceratioidei: development and relationships. pp. 325-334 in Moser, H.G. et al. (eds). Ontogeny and Systematics of Fishes. American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists. Special Publication 1: 1-760
Miya, M., Pietsch, T.W., Orr, J.W., Arnold, R.J., Satoh, T.P., Shedlock, A.M., Ho, H-C., Shimazaki, M., Yabe, M. & Nishida, M. 2010. Evolutionary history of anglerfishes (Teleostei: Lophiiformes): a mitogenomic perspective. BMC Evolutionary Biology 10(58): 10-27
Pietsch, T.W. 1984. Lophiiformes: development and relationships. pp. 320-325 figs 164-166 in Moser, H.G. et al. (eds). Ontogeny and Systematics of Fishes. American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists. Special Publication 1: 1-760
Pietsch, T.W. 1999. Families Antennariidae, Tetrabrachiidae, Lophichthyidae. pp. 2013-2019 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 3 pp. 1397-2068.
Pietsch, T.W. 1999. Families Caulophrynidae, Neoceratiidae, Melanocetidae, Himantolophidae, Diceratiidae, Oneirodidae, Thaumatichthyidae, Centrophrynidae, Ceratiidae, Gigantactinidae, Linophrynidae. pp. 2026-2037 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 3 pp. 1397-2068.
Shedlock, A.M., Pietsch, T.W., Haygood, M.G., Bentzen, P. & Hasegawa, M. 2004. Molecular systematics and life history evolution of anglerfishes (Teleostei: Lophiiformes): Evidence from mitochondrial DNA. Steenstrupia 28(2): 129–144