Morphology Data of Distichodus engycephalus
Identification keys
Main Ref. Vari, R.P., 2007
Appearance refers to
Bones in OsteoBase

Sex attributes

Specialized organs no special organs
Different appearance different morphology in juveniles and adults
Different colors different colors in juveniles and adults

Descriptive characteristics of juvenile and adult

Striking features none
Body shape lateral short and / or deep
Cross section compressed
Dorsal head profile more or less straight
Type of eyes more or less normal
Type of mouth/snout more or less normal
Position of mouth sub-terminal/inferior
Type of scales ctenoid scales

Diagnosis: mouth inferior; body depth 2.6-3.4x and head length 4.0-5.4x SL; caudal peduncle length <= its depth; eye diameter 3.5 (juveniles)-5.7x head length; 11-12 scales between lateral line and scaly process at bases of pelvic fins; juveniles with numerous small, dark, eye-sized, spots on sides (Ref. 2936, 86396). No round humeral spot, no vertical bars (Ref. 81638). 73-86 (Ref. 81638) or 75-86 (Ref. 86396) lateral line scales. 14-16 (Ref. 81638) or 15.5-16.5 (Ref. 86396) scales between dorsal fin and lateral line. 20-28 (Ref. 81638) or 22-27 (Ref. 86396) total dorsal fin rays. 13-17 (Ref. 81638) or 13-16 (Ref. 86396) total anal fin rays.

Description: round snout (Ref. 2936, 86396). Mouth with 2 rows of bicuspid teeth in each jaw; premaxilla with 8-9, dentary with 8-10 teeth in outer row, maxilla edentulous; ventral surface slightly convex to anal fin origin; caudal fin lobes pointed, scales covering somewhat more than ¾ of fin in smaller individuals and extending nearly to distal margin of fin in larger specimens; scales ctenoid and small; lateral line scales to slightly beyond hypural joint and followed by smaller, variably pored scales; D: III-IV,17-24 with first unbranched ray very short; A: III-IV,10-13; 10-12 scales between anal fin origin and lateral line (Ref. 81638). Pelvic fins inserted at level of 5th or 6th dorsal-fin ray and not reaching anal-fin origin (Ref. 2936, 86396).

Coloration: body generally gray, darker on back lighter on belly (Ref. 2936, 86396). Preserved specimens brown; head and body darker dorsally; flanks with variably obvious, dark spots somewhat smaller than orbit; smaller specimens with horizontally elongate, dark spot on posterior portion of caudal peduncle and basal portions of middle caudal fin rays; fins dusky with variably developed, small, dark spots on dorsal fin; scaled portion of caudal fin typically darker than unscaled portion (Ref. 81638). Upper portion of eye reddish; juveniles with one orange spot followed by one black spot on lateral line at level of pectorals (Ref. 2936, 86396).

Ease of Identification

Meristic characteristics of Distichodus engycephalus

Lateral Lines 1 Interrupted: No
Scales on lateral line 73 - 86
Pored lateral line scales
Scales in lateral series
Scale rows above lateral line 14 - 16.5
Scale rows below lateral line 15.5 - 17.5
Scales around caudal peduncle
Barbels 0
Gill clefts (sharks/rays only)
Gill rakers
on lower limb 14 - 18
on upper limb


Dorsal fin(s)

Attributes no striking attributes
Fins number 1
Finlets No. Dorsal   
Spines total 0 - 0
Soft-rays total 20 - 28
Adipose fin present

Caudal fin

Attributes forked; more or less normal

Anal fin(s)

Fins number 1
Spines total 0 - 0
Soft-rays total 13 - 17

Paired fins

Pectoral Attributes  more or less normal
Soft-rays   17 - 19
Pelvics Attributes  more or less normal
Position    abdominal  behind origin of D1
Soft-rays   10 - 10
Main Ref. (e.g. 9948)
Glossary ( e.g. cephalopods )
Entered by Palomares, Maria Lourdes D.
Modified by Geelhand, Dimitri
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cfm script by eagbayani, 17.10.00, php script by rolavides, 13/03/08 ,  last modified by sortiz, 06.27.17