Mephisto albomaculosus, a new spikefish (Actinopterygii: Tetraodontiformes: Triacanthodidae) collected off Myanmar, Indian Ocean


A new spikefish, Mephisto albomaculosus, is described based on a single specimen (94.4 mm SL) collected off Myanmar, eastern Indian Ocean in 2015. It is distinguished from the only other species of the genus, M. fraserbrunneri Tyler 1966, by many white spots on the ventral half of the head and body, fewer gill rakers (15 vs. 19), fewer pseudobranch lamellae (16 vs. 18‒19), more upper and lower jaw teeth (25 in both jaws vs. 17 and 19–20, respectively) and a narrower pelvis (width 7.8% SL vs. 11.3–11.7% SL; pelvic width in pelvic length 4.0 vs. 2.7–2.8).

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Photograph by O. Alvheim


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The EAF-Nansen Project provided us with the specimen of Mephisto albomaculosus collected on the R/V Dr. Fridjof Nansen Myanmar survey. We offer many thanks to Jens-Otto Krakstad, Oddgeir Alvheim (Institute of Marine Research, Norway) and Htun Thein (Department of Fisheries, Myanmar) and to all the crew and people involved in the Myanmar Nansen survey. K. Kuriiwa of NSMT made the X-ray photograph of the holotype. J. C. Tyler kindly provided comments on the manuscript. This study was partially supported by JSPS Asian Core Program ‘‘Establishment of Research and Education Network on Coastal Marine Science in Southeast Asia.’’

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Correspondence to Keiichi Matsuura.

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This article was registered in the Official Register of Zoological Nomenclature (ZooBank) as 20254338-0F54-4963-9416-60A67D62AA78.

This article was published as an Online First article on the online publication date shown on this page. The article should be cited by using the doi number.

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Matsuura, K., Psomadakis, P.N. & Thun, M.T. Mephisto albomaculosus, a new spikefish (Actinopterygii: Tetraodontiformes: Triacanthodidae) collected off Myanmar, Indian Ocean. Ichthyol Res 66, 30–33 (2019).

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  • Triacanthodidae
  • New species
  • Mephisto
  • Taxonomy
  • Indian Ocean