Our deep seas and oceans are crawling with some of the most weirdest known creatures on Earth. The Fangtooth is one such creature. This sea-dwelling creature is actually a fish and its numbers are decreasing rapidly. Let us find out 20 interesting Fangtooth facts and learn why it is one of the strangest and weirdest creatures on this planet.
Interesting Fangtooth Facts: 1-10
1. Fangtooth is a type of Beryciform fish and belongs to the Anoplogastridae family. Beryciform fish are a type of fish that are not very well-understood. Beryciform is the name given to the group of several families of fish. Scientists have not yet properly understood these seven families.
2. Beryciform fish do not like bright light and come close to the surface only during night. Fangtooths are also known for avoiding bright light.
3. Fangtooths are usually found in cold-temperate waters and tropical waters.
4. There are two very similar species of Fangtooths available. No other close relatives are known so far. The two know species are Shorthorn Fangtooth (Anoplogaster brachycera) and Common Fangtooth (Anoplogaster cornuta).
5. Fangtooths have a very dreadful appearance. They have fang-like and disproportionately large teeth.
6. Despite the fact that their teeth give them a very frightening look and make them look unapproachable, they are very harmless to humans and are quite small in size.
7. The Common Fangtooth is the larger of the two species and typically reaches the size of 7.1 inches or 18 centimeters.
8. The Shorthorn Fangtooth, on the other hand, is half the size of the Common Fangtooth however, the Shorthorn Fangtooth is only known from a juvenile specimen.
9. The Fangtooth have small eyes that are set relatively high on the head. The head has a strong lateral compression and the color varies from dark brown to black. The head is anteriorly deep but slender towards the tail.
10. Compared to the head, the jaw is large, full of mucous cavities that are outlined by serrated edges with a think skin covering. The jaw appears haggard.
Interesting Fangtooth Facts: 11-20
11. Fangtooths have scales embedded right in their skin, taking the form of thin plates and they have spineless, simple and small fins.
12. Fangtooths have two long fangs on lower jaw. These two fangs are so long that opposing sockets have developed on either side of their brains so that the teeth can be accommodated when the jaws close.
13. Juveniles are different from adults in their physical appearance. Their preoperculum and head have long spines. They also have slender and long gill rakers, functional gall bladders and their teeth are depressible and much smaller.
14. Juvenile Fangtooths have are light gray in color. Because of the unusual physical appearance of the juveniles, they were once classified as different species by the scientists.
15. Fangtooths live in deep sea. They are often found at the depth of 16,400 ft or 5,000 meters. They are however most commonly found between the depths of 200 and 2,000 meters or (660 and 6,560 feet).
16. Fangtooths use Diel Vertical Migration as shown by deep-sea fish. Diel Vertical Migration is nothing but a type of movement in which deep-sea fish move up to upper layers of ocean during night and feed and by daybreak, they return back to the gloomy depths.
17. Fangtooths often depend on contact chemoreception for finding prey. It is just a matter of luck whether or not they bump into something edible. They usually target squid and fish. Juveniles filter zooplankton from water.
18. Fangtooths do not mind targeting preys bigger than their own size by taking advantage of lean waters.
19. Marlin, Tuna and some shark species prey on Fangtooth.
20. Fangtooths are not egg guarders. They are known to have planktonic larvae. Scientists are not very sure about spawning time and frequency but believe that some activity takes place between June and August. In case of Common Fangtooth, juveniles start descending to deeper waters once they reach the size of 8 centimeters of 3 inches. Based on the study of other deep-water fish, scientists assume that Fangtooths are slow-growing.