Morphology Data of Osphronemus exodon
Identification keys
Main Ref. Roberts, T.R., 1994
Appearance refers to
Bones in OsteoBase

Sex attributes

Specialized organs
Different appearance
Different colors

Descriptive characteristics of juvenile and adult

Striking features
Body shape lateral short and / or deep
Cross section
Dorsal head profile
Type of eyes
Type of mouth/snout
Position of mouth
Type of scales

Differs from the other three known species of Osphronemus in having oral teeth increasingly enlarged and externalized in large adults, a condition apparently unique within anabantoid fishes. In large specimens examined, over 40 cm SL, all of the jaw teeth are enlarged, especially those in the outermost rows, which lie on the external surface of the jaws entirely outside the mouth when it is shut. Coloration of juveniles and adults also is diagnostic. Small juveniles have 6 or 7 vertical bars and a supra-anal dark oval spot, none of which are retained by adults and subadults. Juveniles over about 10 cm have a reddish orangish stripe on the lower part of the head and breast, a feature not observed in any other species. All adults have extensive dark (almost black) areas ventrally and pale areas dorsally. Several large specimens (especially from Stung Treng market, Cambodia) with large and irregular red blotches that superficially at least look very muck like bodied bruises.

Ease of Identification

Meristic characteristics of Osphronemus exodon

Lateral Lines Interrupted: No
Scales on lateral line 31 - 32
Pored lateral line scales
Scales in lateral series
Scale rows above lateral line
Scale rows below lateral line
Scales around caudal peduncle
Gill clefts (sharks/rays only)
Gill rakers
on lower limb
on upper limb
total 9 - 9


Dorsal fin(s)

Fins number 1
Finlets No. Dorsal   0 - 0
Ventral  0 - 0
Spines total 14 - 16
Soft-rays total 10 - 11
Adipose fin absent

Caudal fin

Attributes more or less truncate; more or less normal

Anal fin(s)

Fins number
Spines total 11 - 13
Soft-rays total 17 - 19

Paired fins

Pectoral Attributes  
Soft-rays   13 - 14
Pelvics Attributes  
Main Ref. (e.g. 9948)
Glossary ( e.g. cephalopods )
Entered by Torres, Armi G.
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