Boschung, Herbert T. Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
Last reviewed:September 2015
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- Suborder Argentinoidei
- Suborder Alepocephaloidei
- Opisthoproctid specializations
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
An order of teleost fishes, comprising the argentines or herring smelts, in the superorder Protacanthopterygii. Members of the order Argentiniformes are marine, deep-water fishes. They are identifiable by the following combination of characters: a variable body, being elongate and cylindrical in some to short and compressed in others; a greatly reduced jaw mechanism; a greatly reduced dentition; a premaxillary bone that is absent in some species, but lacking teeth if present; a usually toothless maxillary bone; eyes variously directed, with some species having tubular eyes; some species with specialized light organs, which may be associated with tubular eyes; no serial photophores; an adipose fin that can be present or absent; a forked caudal fin; and a physoclistous (not attached to the gut) swim bladder that can be present or absent. In addition, the argentines have a crumenal organ (paired branchial pouches in which food particles are trapped by large interlocking toothed gill rakers). See also: Actinopterygii; Osteichthyes; Photophore gland; Swim bladder; Teleostei
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