Male Deep-sea Anglerfish

Male Deep-sea Anglerfish

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Credit: Dante Fenolio/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Anglerfish of the family Ceratiidae are sexually dimorphic. Females are the sex that most people would recognize as deep sea fish, with their glowing lures at the ends of long 'fishing rods' extending from the forehead. Many species also have long teeth and a bulbous body. Males, on the other hand, are small fish (usually about 2.5cm (1 inch) or smaller). Males don't have the big teeth or the glowing lures. They have a well developed sense of smell and they spend the first part of their lives searching the black ocean depths for a female of their own species. If they find one, they swim up, bite her, and hold on. In fact, the male holds on so long that the skin of the female grows over the front of his face and he ultimately becomes connected to her

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Keywords: angler fish, anglerfish, bathypelagic, bioluminescence, bioluminescent, ceratiidae, deep sea fish, deep-ocean fish, deep-sea fish, free-swimming, gulf of mexico, himantolophus, large teeth, mesopelagic, nekton, parasitic male, pelagos, photophore, predator, predatory, sexual dimorphism, sexually dimorphic, symbiotic bacteria, unattached

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