Grideye Spiderfish, Ipnops agassizii Garman 1899

Other Names: Grideye Fish

Ipnops meadi filmed by an ROV on the seafloor in the Central Pacific, May 2017. Source: NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, Mountains in the Deep: Exploring the Central Pacific Basin, May 2017. License: CC by Attribution

A slender black deep-sea fish with eyes modified into large pale flattened photosensitive plates on the head. The eyes lack a lens.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Ipnops agassizii in Fishes of Australia, accessed 20 Oct 2020,

Grideye Spiderfish, Ipnops agassizii Garman 1899

More Info


Northern Coral Sea off Queensland, south to off Nowra, New South Wales. Elsewhere the species occurs in the tropical and temperate Indo-Pacific. Inhabits soft sediment areas on the lower continental slope and abyssal plain.


The skull is dorsoventrally compressed, and the frontals extend laterally beneath the large photosensitive plates in Ipnops.


The species is named in honour of Alexander Agassiz (1835-1910), Curator, Museum of Comparative Zoology (Harvard), and supervisor of the dredging and trawling expedition that collected type

Species Citation

Ipnops agassizi Garman 1899, Mem. Mus. Comp. Zool. Harv. Univ. 24: 259, pl. H(figs 2, 2a). Type locality: Galápagos Islands, 2°34'N, 92°06'W, Albatross station 3413, depth 1360 fathoms.


Bray, D.J. 2020


Atlas of Living Australia

Grideye Spiderfish, Ipnops agassizii Garman 1899


Garman, S. 1899. Reports on an exploration off the west coasts of Mexico, Central and South America, and off the Galapagos Islands, in charge of Alexander Agassiz, by the U.S. Fish Commission Steamer Albatross, during 1891, Lieut. Commander Z.L. Tanner, U.S.N., commanding. 26. The fishes.Memoirs of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University 24: 1-431, 98 pls.  See ref at BHL

Mead, G.W. 1966. Family Ipnopidae. In Fishes of the Western North Atlantic. Sears Found. Mar. Res., Mem. 1(5): 147-161.

Merrett, N.R. & Nielsen, J.G. 1987. A new genus and species of the family Ipnopidae (Pisces, Teleostei) from the eastern North Atlantic, with notes on its ecology. Journal of Fish Biology 31: 451-464

Nielsen, J.G. 1966. Synopsis of the Ipnopidae (Pisces, Iniomi) with descriptions of two new abyssal species. Galathea Report 8: 49-79. PDF

Okiyama, M. 1986. Bathypelagic capture of a metamorphosing juvenile of Ipnops agassizi (Ipnopidae, Myctophiformes). Japanese Journal of Ichthyology 32(4): 443-446· DOI: 10.1007/BF02905424 PDF

Prirodina, V.P. & Neyelov, A.V. 2020. The osteological features of Ipnops agassizii Garman, 1899 (Aulopiformes: Ipnopidae) from bathyal and ultra-abyssal depths of the Australia–New Zealand region, with remarks on the biogeographical significance of these findings. Russian Journal of Marine Biology 46: 22–28.

Sulak, K.J. 1986. Family No. 76: Chlorophthalmidae. pp. 261-265 in Smith, M.M. & Heemstra, P.C. (eds). Smith's Sea Fishes. Johannesburg : Macmillan South Africa xx + 1047 pp. 144 pls.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37123004


Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:1392-4163 m


Max Size:15 cm SL

Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map