Two new species of Paraliparis (Scorpaeniformes: Liparidae) from the Ross Sea (Antarctica)
Liparidae from stomachs of Antarctic toothfish Dissostichus mawsoni Norman, 1937 (Nototheniidae) caught in the Ross Sea (Pacific sector of Antarctica) have been identified. Two new species of deep-water liparids of the genus Paraliparis Collett, 1879—P. caninus sp. nov. (at a depth of 1182–1651 m) and P. vipera sp. nov. (1700 m)—were described. Both species that turned out to be most similar to P. neelovi Andriashev, 1982, from the Kerguelen area (the Indo-Oceanic sector of the South Ocean) are combined with it into a species group “P. neelovi.” According to meristic characters, pattern of dentition, and the size of gill opening, species of “P. neelovi” are close to the species group “P. copei.” In collections from a depth of 1700 m, also two individuals of P. andriashevi Stein et Tompkins, 1989, known previously from only two types from the northern boundary of the Ross Sea were found. The new finding supports species validity and extends the known limits of its range. The wide distribution of bathybenthal Paraliparis having low fecundity and leading a near-bottom mode of life can be explained by the presence of mesopelagic juveniles and their dispersal via currents.