Family BYTHITIDAE


Common name: Aphyonids, Blindfishes, Brotulas, Cuskfishes, Gelatinous cuskeels, Live-bearing brotulas, Live-bearing cusks

Silhouette

Summary:
A diverse family of live-bearing fishes, differing mostly from the similar ophidiids, in having internal fertilization and associated copulatory organs. While many species are found in deep-sea habitats, other small, secretive species shelter in crevices occur on shallow reefs. Some species inhabit fresh and brackish waters.
Species are difficult to identify as the structure of the male reproductive organ is the most important diagnostic character, along with scale patterns on the head.
A few genera are small, fragile, scaleless deep sea fishes rarely collected above 700 m; many species have a number of neotenous (larval) features associated with life in the deep sea. 
First ever live footage of a gelatinous cuskeel taken by NOAA's Okeanos Explorer around the Mariana Islands at a depth of ~2,500 m, June 2016.


Cite this page as:
Dianne J. Bray, Live-bearing Cusks, BYTHITIDAE in Fishes of Australia, accessed 19 Aug 2019, http://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/family/8

References


Anderson, M.E. 2005. Three new species of Microbrotula (Teleostei: Ophidiiformes; Bythitidae) from the Indo-West Pacific. Zootaxa 1006: 33-42.

Anderson, M.E. 2007. Two new Microbrotula (Teleostei : Ophidiiformes : Bythitidae) from the southwestern Pacific Ocean, with a revised key to the species. Species Diversity 12(1): 1-8.

Anderson, M.E. 2008. A new genus with two new species of live-bearing brotulas (Teleostei: Ophidiiformes: Bythitidae) from southern Australia. Species Diversity 13(2-3): 149-156

Cohen, D.M. 1986. Family 98: Bythitidae, pp. 354-356 In Smith, M.M. & P.C. Heemstra. Smiths' Sea Fishes. J.L.B. Smith Inst. Ichthyol. Grahamstown, South Africa.

Cohen, D.M. & J.G. Nielsen. 1978. Guide to the identification of genera of the fish order Ophidiiformes with a tentative classification of the order. NOAA Tech. Rep. NMFS Circ. 417: 1-72.

Fahay, M.P. & J.A. Hare. 2006. Ch. 49 Order Ophidiiformes: Aphyonidae, Bythitidae, Ophidiidae, p. 661 In W.J. Richards (ed). Early Stages Of Atlantic Fishes: An Identification Guide For The Western Central North Atlantic. CRC Press, Taylor and Francis Group, Boca Raton, FL, 2640 pp.

Gomon, M.F. 2008. Family Bythitidae. pp. 356-359 in Gomon. M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.

Gordon, D.J., D.F. Markle & J.E. Olney. 1984. Order Ophidiiformes, pp. 308-319 In Moser H.G., W.J. Richards, D.M. Cohen, M.P. Fahay, A.W. Kendall, Jr. & S.L. Richardson (eds). Ontogeny and Systematics of Fishes. Am. Soc. Ichthyol. Herpetol. Spec. Publ. No. 1. 760 pp.

Leis, J.M. & D. Rennis. 2000. Family Bythitidae, In Leis, J.M. & B.M. Carson-Ewart. (eds). The larvae of Indo-Pacific coastal fishes. An identification guide to marine fish larvae. (Fauna Malesiana Handbooks 2). E.J. Brill, Leiden. 870 pp.

Machida, Y. 1993. Two new genera and species of the subfamily Brosmophycinae (Bythitidae, Ophidiiformes) from northern Australia. Japanese Journal of Ichthyology 39(4): 281-286.

Machida, Y. 2000. A new bythitid genus and species, Acarobythites larsonae, from shallow rocky reefs off northern Australia (Pisces, Ophidiiformes, Bythitidae). The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 16: 123-126.

Møller, P.R. & W. Schwarzhans. 2006. Review of the Dinematichthyini (Teleostei, Bythitidae) of the Indo-west Pacific. Part II. Dermatopsis, Dermatopsoides and Dipulus with description of six new species. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 22: 39-76.

Møller, P.R., Schwarzhans, W. & Nielsen, J.G. 2004. Review of the American Dinematichthyini (Teleostei: Bythitidae). Part I. Dinematichthys, Gunterichthys, Typhliasina and two new genera. Aqua, J. Ichthyol. Aquat. Biol. 8(4): 141–192.

Moser, H.G. (ed.) 1996. The Early Stages of Fishes in the California Current Region. CalCOFI Atlas No.33 Allen Press Inc, Lawrence, Kansas. 1505 pp.

Nielsen, J.G. 1969. Systematics and biology of the Aphyonidae (Pisces, Ophidioidea). Galathea Rept. 10: 90 pp.

Nielsen, J.G. 1984. Parasciadonus brevibrachium n. gen. et sp. - an abyssal aphyonid from the Central Atlantic (Pisces, Ophidiiformes). Cybium 8: 39-44.

Nielsen, J.G. 2011. Revision of the bathyal fish genus Pseudonus (Teleostei, Bythitidae); P. squamiceps a senior synonym of P. platycephalus, new to Australian waters. Zootaxa 2867: 59-66.

Nielsen, J.G., Cohen, D.M., Markle, D.F. & Robins, C.R. (eds) 1999. FAO Species Catalogue, Vol. 18, Ophidiiform Fishes of the World (Order Ophidiiformes), An annotated and illustrated catalogue of pearlfishes, cusk-eels, brotulas and other ophidiiform species known to date. FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125 Vol. 18 178 pp.

Nielsen, J. & W. Schwarzhans. 2011. A new genus and species of Bythitidae (Teleostei: Ophidiiformes) from northwestern Australia. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 27: 143-146.

Okiyama, M. & Kato, H. 1997. A pelagic juvenile of Barathronus pacificus (Ophidiiformes: Aphyonidae) from the southwest Pacific. Ichthyol. Res. 44(2): 222-226.

Proudlove, G.S. 2006. Subterranean fishes of the World. An account of the subterranean (hypogean) fishes described up to 2003 with a bibliography 1541-2004. International Society for Subterranean Biology, Moulis.

Schwarzhans, W. & Møller, P. R. 2007. Review of the Dinematichthyini (Teleostei: Bythitidae) of the Indo-west Pacific. Part III. Beaglichthys, Brosmolus, Monothrix and eight new genera with description of 20 new species. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 23: 29-110.

Schwarzhans, W. & Møller, P. R. 2011. New Dinematichthyini (Teleostei: Bythitidae) from the Indo-west Pacific, with the description of a new genus and five new species. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 27: 161-177.

Schwarzhans, W. & Nielsen, J. G. 2011. Revision of the genus Microbrotula (Teleostei: Bythitidae), with description of two new species and a related new genus. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 27: 147-160.

Schwarzhans, W., Møller, P.R. & Nielsen, J.G. 2005. Review of the Dinematichthyini (Teleostei: Bythitidae) of the Indo-West Pacific. Part I. Diancistrus and two new genera with 26 new species. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 21: 73-163.