Article Title

Notes on the Systematics of the Crestfish Genus Lophotus (Lampridiformes: Lophotidae), with a New Record from California





First Page


Last Page



On 17 November 1995, a specimen of crestfish, genus Lophotus, was collected from northern California. Uncertainty regarding the taxonomy of the genus prompted a review of its systematics. Meristic differences in number of dorsal-fin rays and total vertebrae, whose numerical distributions are largely con- gruent with geography, suggest that the previous synonymy of all nominal crest- fish species was unwarranted. Genetic differences between individuals from the north and south Pacific are consistent with meristic variation and indicate the presence of two largely allopatric species in the Pacific basin. While we are unable to completely resolve the taxonomy of Lophotus on a worldwide basis, our study indicates that the eastern and western north Pacific forms are conspecific and distinct from south Pacific Lophotus. The oldest available name for a north Pacific crestfish is Lophotus capellei Temminck and Schlegel, 1845, thus we consider this to be the valid name for the California species.