Talismania mekistonema

Common Name

Threadfin Smoothhead

Year Described

Sulak, 1975


Dorsal Fin: 20-21
Anal Fin: 20-21
Pectoral Fin: 12
Pelvic Fin: 7-8
Lateral Line Scales: 46-48
Gill Rakers: 22-29 (total on first arch)
Branchiostegal rays: 7
Pyloric Caeca: 7-8
Vertebrae: 45-48 total

Body moderately slender and elongate, with a large head. Eyes smaller than snout. Snout long and pointed (10-12% SL). Premaxiila, maxilla, dentary, palatine, and vomer with teeth (vomer with minute teeth in two separate patches). Two supramaxilla above maxilla. Rear margin of jaw extends to under the middle of orbit. Dorsal fin directly over anal fin. Pectoral and pelvic fins small. Upper pectoral rays thickened and filamentous, reaching well beyond anal fin base. Caudal fin deeply forked with extended tips. Body and head with scales.


Uniformly brownish with a darker head.


Maximum size to 21cm SL.


Benthopelagic from 600-1,500m.


The Bahamas and one record in the S. Caribbean


Sulak, K. J. 1975. Biological results of the University of Miami Deep-Sea Expeditions: 111. Talismania mekistonema, a new Atlantic species of the family Alepocephalidae (Pisces: Salmoniformes). Bulletin of Marine Science v. 25 (no. 1): 88-93.

Whitehead, P.J.P. , M.-L. Bauchot, J.-C. Hureau, J.G. Nielsen and E. Tortonese. 1986. Fishes of the North-eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean. Vol. I-III. UNESCO. Fishes of the North-eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean. http://species-identification.org.