, Volume 54, Issue 2, pp 131-136
Date: 25 May 2007

Epigonus cavaticus (Teleostei: Perciformes), a new epigonid fish from Palau, western Central Pacific

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A new epigonid fish, Epigonus cavaticus, is described on the basis of eight specimens (59.2–69.5 in standard length: SL) collected from a cave at depth 20 m, southern fringing reef of Ngemelis Island, Palau. The species differs from other congeners by having minute teeth on both jaws, no opercular spine, pyloric caeca 7–8, gill rakers 25–27, total pored lateral line scales 48–50, dorsal fin rays VII-I, 10–11 (mode VII-I, 10), pectoral fin rays 16, vertebrae 10 + 15, body depth 21.4–25.0% SL, pectoral fin length 22.7–24.6% SL, eye diameter 44.4–47.5% head length: HL, upper jaw length 40.2–42.5% HL. Four paratypes (63.7–66.8 mm SL) of the new species are female with mature gonads, it is the smallest in size at sexual maturity among the congeners.