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Species: Phtheirichthys lineatus, Slender Suckerfish, Slender Suckerfish Remora

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very elongate
head disc 9-11 plates
body: white bordered dark stripe
C: round, +/- sharp tips
pectorals pointed

Phtheirichthys lineatus (Menzies, 1791)

Slender Suckerfish, Slender Suckerfish Remora

Very elongate (depth < 10% of SL); sucking disc on head small, 9-11 plates, reaches ~center of pectoral fin; jaws broad, lower jaw projecting, top jaw not protractile; simple teeth on jaws and center of roof of mouth; operculum without spines; gill rakers 1-3 above, 14-17 below; pectoral pointed, 17-21 rays; base of dorsal and anal fins very long, 2-3x head length; dorsal 32-28 rays; anal 31-38 rays; pectorals high on body, pointed; pelvics under pectoral base, close-set, I, 5; tail with convex to W shaped margin (central rays filamentous in juvenile); scales small, smooth, imbedded.

Upper half blue-black, abruptly white lower half; blue-black above, silver below; a faint dark stripe, bordered above and below by thin pale stripes, along the mid-body; tail black with white upper and lower rear margins.

Size: 56 cm.

Habitat: usually on large fishes or sharks, and turtles.

Depth: 0-100 m?

A circumtropical species, New York to Brazil.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Offshore
  • Offshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Mid Water
  • Near Surface
  • Water column only
  • Water column
  • Large fishes (billfishes, rays, sharks, etc), turtles & whales
FishBase Habitat
  • Pelagic
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Ectoparasite cleaner
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Zooplankton
  • Bony fishes
  • Ectoparasites
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans)
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Extends North of GC
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 56
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 100