lantern fish

lanternfish

[lan-tern-fish]
noun, plural (especially collectively) lanternfish (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) lanternfishes.
any of several small, deep-sea fishes of the family Myctophidae, having rows of luminous organs along each side, certain species of which migrate to the surface at night.
Also, lantern fish.


Origin:
1745–55; lantern + fish

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World English Dictionary
lantern fish
 
n
any small deep-sea teleost fish of the family Myctophidae, having a series of luminescent spots along the body

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

lantern fish

any of the numerous species of small, abundant, deep-sea fish of the family Myctophidae. Lantern fish live in the depths by day, but at night they may approach the surface and can sometimes be attracted to lights. They are somewhat elongated fish with large mouths and eyes and numerous light organs on the head, underside, and tail base. The arrangement of these lights may aid species or sex recognition. The pattern also provides an important means of identifying the 150 or more species. Fully grown lantern fish range from about 2.5 to 15 cm (1 to 6 inches) long.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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