anglerfish


anglerfish
/ang"gleuhr fish/, n., pl. (esp. collectively) anglerfish, (esp. referring to two or more kinds or species) anglerfishes.
angler (defs. 3, 4).
[1645-55; ANGLER + FISH]

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Any of about 210 species of marine fishes (order Lophiiformes) named for their method of "fishing" for prey.

The foremost spine of the dorsal fin is located on the head and is modified into a "fishing rod" tipped with a fleshy "bait." Prey fishes attracted to this lure stray close enough for the anglerfish to swallow them. Often bizarre in form, anglerfishes are also characterized by small gill openings and by limblike pectoral and (in some species) pelvic fins. Most species inhabit the sea bottom. In some species the small male bites into the larger female's body, his mouth fuses with the skin, and the bloodstreams of the two become permanently connected.

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▪ fish order
 any of about 210 species of marine fishes of the order Lophiiformes. Anglers are named for their method of “fishing” for their prey. The foremost spine of the dorsal fin is located on the head and is modified into a “fishing rod” tipped with a fleshy “bait.” Prey fishes attracted to this lure stray close enough for the anglerfish to swallow them. Often bizarre in form, anglerfishes are also characterized by small gill openings and by limblike pectoral and (in some species) pelvic fins. Most species of anglerfishes inhabit the sea bottom. They are divided into four groups: batfish, goosefish, frogfish (qq.v.), and deep-sea angler.

      The deep-sea anglers comprise 11 families of the superfamilyCeratioidea. Unlike other anglers, they lack pelvic fins, and they swim about, though feebly, rather than live on the bottom. They may be up to 1.2 m (4 feet) long, but most are much smaller. Only the females have a “fishing rod.” This ranges from short to long, and the “bait”—almost always luminous—from simple to ornate. In some species there are also other luminous organs.

      Deep-sea anglers prey on various fishes and invertebrates. Some have been known to swallow prey larger than themselves. In all deep-sea anglers, the males are much smaller than the females and lack an angling apparatus. Three families are notable for the fact that the males live as permanent parasites on their mates. In these species, the male attaches himself, by biting, to the body of the female. His mouth fuses with her skin, and the bloodstreams of the two fishes become connected, the male thereafter remaining totally dependent on the female for nourishment.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • anglerfish — /ˈæŋgləfɪʃ/ (say anggluhfish) noun (plural anglerfish or anglerfishes) 1. any of a number of small Australian fishes, variously coloured and often camouflaged, belonging to the family Antennariidae, as the striped anglerfish, Phrynelox striatus;… …   Australian English dictionary

  • anglerfish — noun Date: circa 1889 any of several pediculate fishes (as the goosefishes); especially monkfish …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • anglerfish — a member of the Order Lophiiformes, comprising over 313 species in 18 families. They have a fishing apparatus developed from the first ray of the spiny dorsal fin comprising the illicium (q.v.) or fishing rod tipped by the esca (q.v.) or bait.… …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • anglerfish — noun Any fish of the bony fish order Lophiiformes. These fish use an outgrowth that can be wiggled so as to resemble a prey animal to lure and catch their prey. Syn: monkfish, goosefish, fishing frog, Lophius piscatorius, frog fish, sea devil See …   Wiktionary

  • anglerfish — n. large predatory fish …   English contemporary dictionary

  • anglerfish — noun (plural same or anglerfishes) a marine fish that lures prey within reach of its mouth with a fleshy lobe on a filament arising from its snout. [Lophius piscatorius and many other species.] …   English new terms dictionary

  • anglerfish — an•gler•fish [[t]ˈæŋ glərˌfɪʃ[/t]] n. pl. (esp. collectively) fish, (esp. for kinds or species) fish•es. ich angler 3) • Etymology: 1645–55 …   From formal English to slang

  • anglerfish — noun fishes having large mouths with a wormlike filament attached for luring prey • Syn: ↑goosefish, ↑angler, ↑angler fish, ↑monkfish, ↑lotte, ↑allmouth, ↑Lophius Americanus • Derivationally related forms …   Useful english dictionary

  • Humpback anglerfish — Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia Phylum …   Wikipedia


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