Trichiurus auriga   Klunzinger,  1884 (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: FAO

Size: Maximum 35 cm SL; common to 30 cm SL.

Color: Fresh specimens are pearl white with dorsal slightly dusky; margins of dorsal and anal fins dusky in formalin.

Body extremely elongate and strongly compressed, ribbon-like, tapering to a point. Mouth very large, with a small flap at tip of each jaw; 2 or 3 pairs and one pair of fangs without barbs on upper and lower jaws, respectively; a single series of sharp, compressed lateral teeth in both jaws; minute teeth on palatines (roof of mouth); eye very large, its diameter contained 5.5 to 7 times in head length; lower hind margin of gill cover concave. Dorsal fin long-based and rather low, without a notch between the spinous and soft parts, with 3 spines and 106 to 113 soft rays; anal fin reduced to about 80 spinules slightly breaking skin, originating below 40th or 41st dorsal fin ray; pectoral fins about as long as snout, with 1 spine and 9 soft rays; pelvic and caudal fins absent. Lateral line originating at upper margin of gill cover, running obliquely to behind tip of pectoral fin, then straight near to ventral profile of body. Distance from snout to anus about 2/5 of standard length.

Synonym (s)

Common Name (s)
• Pearly Hairtail (English)
Economic Importance and Threats

Habitat:  Bentho Pelagic
Trophic Level:  Consumer
Prey:  Shrimps and small fishes


• Bay of Bengal (Lat: 17) (Long: 82.83) INDIA (Record: 02/1985-06/1987) (Depth: 70 mts)
• Kerala INDIA
• Tamil Nadu INDIA
• West Coast INDIA (Record: 1998-2000) (Depth: 301-400 mts)

Literature Source(s)
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51) FAO, Rome 4 Available at -
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at -
  • Balachandran, K and Nizar, MA (1990) A check list of fishes of the Exclusive Economic Zone of India collected during the research cruises of FORV Sagar Sampada Proceedings of the first workshop on scientific results of FORV Sagar Sampada CMFRI, Cochin 305-324 Available at -
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at -
  • Venu, S and Kurup, BM (2002) Distribution and abundance of deep sea fishes along the west coast of India Fishery Technology Society of Fisheries Technologists 39(1) 20-26 Available at - NIO, Goa

Page last updated on:2011-12-27

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