Familia Ateleopodidae


by J. R. Paxton

Benthic fishes of soft, flabby appearance and brown or black colour. Head moderate, mouth moderate, protractile and subterminal; eye small to moderate. No abdominal ribs; no fin spines. Dorsal anterior with 3-13 rays, anal confluent with caudal, together with 76-130 rays; pectorals with 11-14 rays, pelvics jugular or thoracic with 1-10 rays. Skin naked (although lateral line-scales usually embedded in lateral line canal); lateralis system not notably cavernous on head, indistinct on body. Vertebrae more than 120. Stomach and abdominal area moderately distensible.
Little known of general biology, one species eats crustaceans; uncommon benthic fishes, some attaining almost 2 m total length; no commercial importance.

Genera 4; in Clofnam area 2.

Recent revision: Howell Rivero (1935).