Other Free Encyclopedias » Animal Life Resource » Fish and Other Cold-Blooded Vertebrates » Lizardfishes and Relatives: Aulopiformes - Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Longnose Lancetfish (alepisaurus Ferox): Species Accounts, Tripodfish (bathypterois Quadrifilis): Species Accounts - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, THEIR REL

Lizardfishes and Relatives: Aulopiformes - Tripodfish (bathypterois Quadrifilis): Species Accounts

bottom rays live walk

Physical characteristics: Tripodfish have a long, thin body and reach a length of about 7 inches (18 centimeters). The pectoral, pelvic, and tail fin rays are all very long. When erect, these rays act as a tripod on which the fish balances itself on the bottom. Tripodfish are bronze to pale with gray on the head and belly and along the lower back.

Geographic range: Tripodfish live on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

Habitat: Tripodfish live on sand and rubble in the deep part of the ocean.

Diet: Tripodfish eat smaller fishes and crustaceans that they ambush on the bottom. Crustaceans (krus-TAY-shuns) are water-dwelling animals that have jointed legs and a hard shell but no backbone.

Tripodfish can "walk" on the bottom using their tripod. (Illustration by Patricia Ferrer. Reproduced by permission.)

Behavior and reproduction: Tripodfish can "walk" on the bottom using their tripod. To reproduce they act as both sexes at the same time. The eggs and larvae drift in open water.

Tripodfish and people: Tripodfish are of no commercial importance but are a curiosity of science.

Conservation status: Tripodfish are not threatened or endangered. ∎



Byatt, Andrew, Alastair Fothergill, and Martha Holmes. Blue Planet. New York: DK, 2001.

Gilbert, Carter Rowell, and James D. Williams. National Audubon Society Field Guide to Fishes: North America. New York: Knopf, 2002.

Web sites:

"Fish of the Deep Sea Floor." Fathom. http://www.fathom.com/course/10701050/session4.html (accessed on October 4, 2004).

[back] Lizardfishes and Relatives: Aulopiformes - Longnose Lancetfish (alepisaurus Ferox): Species Accounts

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