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Using morphological and mitogenomic sequence data, Johnson et al. (2009) have shown that fishes formerly placed in the family Megalomycteridae (bignose fishes) are actually the males of Cetomimidae (whalefishes). These findings were very surprising since there is great sexual dimorphism associated with distinctly different life styles. Adult females have huge mouths suitable for the capture of large prey, while adult males do not feed at all. They lose their stomach and esophagus, instead relying on a massive liver for nutritional support throughout adult life.


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© Katja Schulz

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