Common Name: Kapala Lanternfish. Scientific Name: Diaphus kapalae. Family: Myctophidae
Lanternfish are generally the most abundant group of fishes caught during trawls of the mid-water (mesopelagic) and deep (bathypelagic) regions of the ocean.
They are some of the most widely distributed, populous, and diverse of all vertebrates. Therefore, lanternfish play an important ecological role as prey for larger organisms.
Kapala lanternfish are usually between 35mm – 67 mm in length and are found in the southwestern Pacific Ocean.
The image above was posted on our Facebook page last week for users to comment on what the fish was thinking. You can read the great responses we got here.
These images were taken for a photographic guide produced by CSIRO scientists to identify the mid-water fish of the southern Tasman Sea. Here are some more great images from the guide.
Mid-water fishes are notoriously difficult to identify and this guide was developed to help researchers, students, commercial fishers and fisheries observers to identify fishes, encourage standardisation in data collection and foster data sharing. The guide shows both striking images of specimens collected in a good condition while also showing normal specimen quality collected during trawls.
Find out more about the Kapala Lanternfish and other mid-water fish of the southern Tasman Sea by checking out the guide!