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Ophichthus brevirostris, a new species of snake eel, subfamily Ophichthinae, is described from a specimen trawled in deep water (406-440 m) off North Carolina. It is distinguished from its congeners by the following combination of characters: large orbit; filamentous pectoral fin; two preopercular pores; short snout; minute dentition; body coloration; and vertebral formula (13/60/153). It is most similar to Ophichthus arneutes from the Gala??pagos, O. genie from New Caledonia and Maldives, and two undescribed congeners from Seychelles and Tonga. It differs from them in its dorsalfin origin, dentition, and vertebral numbers. Its characteristics do not agree with that of any of the 15 known leptocephali of western Atlantic relatives. ?? 2007 by the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists.
Additional Publication Details
A new deepwater species of the snake eel genus Ophichthus (Anguilliformes: Ophichthidae) from North Carolina