Bigeye Pacific Opah, Lampris megalopsis Underkoffler, Luers, Hyde & Craig 2018

Other Names: Bigeye Moonfish

Holotype of the Bigeye Pacific Opah, Lampris megalopsis, USNM 402733, a female from the north-west Pacific Ocean. Source: Fig. 4F, in Underkoffler et al. (2019) Zootaxa 4413(3): 551–565. License: All rights reserved

A steel grey opah becoming bright silver below, with irregular white spots over the entire body, head, and chest, and deep red fins. 

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Lampris megalopsis in Fishes of Australia, accessed 23 Apr 2021,

Bigeye Pacific Opah, Lampris megalopsis Underkoffler, Luers, Hyde & Craig 2018

More Info


Known in Australian waters from east of Middleton and Elizabeth Reefs in the Tasman Sea (genetic samples only); likely to be more widespread in Australian waters. The species is only rarely found east of 160°W based on the frequency of its occurrence in more than 500 DNA samples. 
Elsewhere the species is circumglobal in tropical waters: Central-North Pacific west to American Samoa, Australia and Indonesia, South Africa (Indian Ocean), the Gulf of Mexico, and along the Chilean coastline.


Similar Species

This species is covered in pale spots, and is much deeper-bodied than Lampris immaculatus. It has a larger eye than Lampris australensis.


The specific name megalopsis is from the Greek mega (= big, large) and ops (= eye) in reference to the comparatively large eye of this species.

Species Citation

Lampris megalopsis Underkoffler, Luers, Hyde & Craig 2018, Zootaxa 4413(3): 561, fig. 4F. Type locality: north-west Pacific Ocean [23°–26° N, 140°–155° W]. 


Bray, D.J. 2020


Atlas of Living Australia

Bigeye Pacific Opah, Lampris megalopsis Underkoffler, Luers, Hyde & Craig 2018


Fricke, R., Allen, G.R., Amon, D., Andréfouët, S., Chen, W.-J., Kinch, J., Mana, R., Russell, B.C., Tully, D. & White, W.T. 2019. Checklist of the marine and estuarine fishes of New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea, western Pacific Ocean, with 810 new records. Zootaxa 4588(1): 1-360

Underkoffler, K.E., Luers, M.A., Hyde, J.R. & Craig, M.T. 2018. A taxonomic review of Lampris guttatus (Brünnich 1788) (Lampridiformes; Lampridae) with descriptions of three new species. Zootaxa 4413(3): 551–565

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37268901

Depth:0-500 m

Habitat:Oceanic, epi- & mesopelagic

Max Size:185 cm

Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map