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Species: Lonchopisthus ancistrus, Hook Jawfish

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body & fins yellow
D&A 12
C 5-13 branched rays
inside mouth pale
cheeks no scales
pelvic long, long ray white
longitudinal scales 33-39

Lonchopisthus ancistrus Smith-Vaniz & Walsh, 2017

Hook Jawfish

Elongate, compressed, tapering body; large bulbous head, eye large, high on side of head; mouth opens at front, large, extends to rear of eye; top jaw with top of rear end concave, strongly hooked; gill rakers 14-19+ 29-33; dorsal and anal fins with long bases; dorsal fin X-XI, 12 (12-13); anal fin III, 12 (11-12); pectoral 19-21; pelvic fins I, 5, long (39.4-75.3% SL), outer 2 rays stout and unbranched, inner 3 rays weaker and branched, fin base before the pectoral, not elongated; tail fin much longer than head, sharply pointed, 5-13 branched rays, no elongated free central fin rays; 33-39 longitudinal scale rows along body; cheeks & opercle not scaled; lateral line on front half of body only, high.

Body and fins dusky yellow; pelvics with elongate ray white; inside mouth pale.

Reaches 14.7 cm.

Probably lives in burrows on muddy bottoms.

Depth range: 110-220 m

The Gulf of Mexico to Honduras.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Brooded
  • Data
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • GC endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 14.7
Depth Range Min
  • 110
Depth Range Max
  • 220