Anoplogaster cornuta

The Fang fish or journal scaler ( Anoplogaster ) are deep-sea fishes from the order of mucus -like head ( Beryciformes ), with a worldwide distribution in tropical and temperate seas. The family contains only two very similar species in a genus.


Fang Fish are like most deep sea fish only small, Anoplogaster cornuta is 15 inches long, Anoplogaster brachycera is only six inches long.

Head and mouth (see fish skull) are very large. The eyes are relatively small. The body is laterally strongly compressed and dark brown to black in color. The fins are small, without hard jets. The lateral line is well developed and is in the form of mucus- filled channels on the skull away.

In adults, the largest two fangs of the lower jaw are so long that the catch toothfish have developed on both sides of the brain a pair of hollow pockets to accommodate the teeth when the mouth is closed. These teeth are ( in relation to body length) the longest of all known marine fish. The young people are morphologically very clear: Unlike adults, they have long spines on the head, greater eyes, a functional swim bladder, gills long, much smaller teeth and are light gray in color. The differences are so great that the young fish have been described as different species, Caulolepis longidens and Caulolepis subulidens.

Way of life

Fang pelagic fish living 200-5000 meters depth. They make a vertical migration. During the day they remain at greater depths and migrate at night in higher water layers. They live singly or in small groups.

Fang predatory fish feed on other fish and squid, and they can also swallow prey that is nearly as big as she is, the young animals that still have small teeth, filter with their long gill zooplankton from the water. They are eaten themselves by large pelagic fish such as tuna and marlin.

Fang fish can be kept in contrast to other deep-sea fishing for months in aquariums alive.


Fang fish have planktonic larvae. With a length of about eight centimeters, the young fish get the shape of the adult and descend into deeper water. They grow slowly probably, like most deep sea fish.


  • Anoplogaster brachycera ( Valenciennes, 1833)
  • Anoplogaster cornuta ( Kotlyar, 1986)


  • Joseph S. Nelson, Fishes of the World, John Wiley & Sons, 2006, ISBN 0-471-25031-7