Comprehensive DescriptionRead full entry
The body of metamorphosed females is short and globular, its depth 50–60% SL. The length of the head is 46–67% SL, the length of the lower jaw, 32–57% SL. The caudal peduncle is unusually short, the dorsal and anal fins terminating nearly at the base of the caudal-fin rays. The sphenotic spines are prominent. The dorsolateral margin of the frontals is smooth, without spines or projections. The lower jaw is without a symphysial spine. The posterior tip of the angular forms a sharp spine. The anterior end of the pterygiophore of the illicium protrudes slightly from the snout. The relative length of the illicium increases with growth: it measures 35.7% SL in a 42-mm specimen, 67.9% SL in a 56-mm specimen, and 70.5% SL in a 105-mm specimen. The escal bulb is relatively large (its width 6.2–8.2% SL) and bears a single, unpigmented distal appendage, 2.3–35.7% SL. Additional escal appendages and filaments are absent. The skin of the head and body is uniformly black to dark red-brown, except for the distal part of the escal bulb and escal appendage.
The teeth are relatively few: there are only 6 or 7 on each premaxilla and 9 on each dentary in a 42-mm specimen; 15 on each premaxilla and 10–12 on each dentary in a 56-mm specimen; and 25 or 26 teeth on each premaxilla and 16 on each dentary in a 105-mm specimen. The longest premaxillary tooth measures 5.0–14.9% SL, the longest dentary tooth, 8.8–19.6% SL. The dorsal and anal fins each contain 3 rays, the pectoral-fin, 16–19 rays. Pelvic fins are absent. There are 9 caudal-fin rays, the ninth ray (the ventral-most) about one-half the length of the eighth caudal-fin ray.