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Bramidae
Mead, G.W. (1972). Bramidae. The Carlsberg Foundation's oceanographical expedition round the World 1928-30 and previous Dana-expeditions. Dana-Report, 81. Andr. Fred. Høst & Søn: Copenhagen. 166, 9 plates pp.
Part of: The Carlsberg Foundation's oceanographical expedition round the World 1928-30 and previous Dana-expeditions. Dana-Report. C.A. Reitzels Forlag/Oxford University Press: Copenhagen. ISSN 0070-2668, more

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    VLIZ: Expedition Reports [255292]

Keywords
    Expedition reports; Bramidae Bonaparte, 1831 [WoRMS]; Marine

Author  Top 
  • Mead, G.W.

Abstract
    A provisional classification of the Bramidae, an oceanic family of acanthopterygian fishes, has been developed from a study of most existing material and relevant literature. The analysis was based in large measure on juveniles and an attempt, partially successful, was made to identify juveniles with their generally dissimilar adult forms. Identifiable larval and juvenile forms were described and figured. Such natural history notes as could be inferred with reasonable confidence from taxonomic and distributional data were included as were the vernacular names in current use and extensive although not exhaustive synonymies. The bramid spp were allocated among 6 genera: Eumegistus, Taractes, Brama, Taractichthys, Pterycombrs and Pteraclis. The phyletic unity of these 6 remains in doubt and this question, together with that of the origin of the group, deserves further study. Eumegitus, apparently the most primitive genus, appears to be a deep water shelf sp, is probably benthic, and is confined to the waters around large islands. Both adults and young are uncommon. E. Brevorti (Poey) is known from off Cuba; E. Illustris Jordan and Jordan from the western and central Pacific. Taractes rubescens (Jordan and Evermann) and T. Asper Lowe are sympatric, circumtropical and oceanic spp that, together with Taractichthys, are both large and relatively uncommon. Larvae are rare; juveniles are more common. Distributional circumstances suggest that both prefer water warmer than 10 degree C. The genus is of some commercial importance although at present it is caught only incidentally. Prior to this study the nominal spp of Brama were considered to be conspecific. While the analysis developed here is unsatisfactory, it is, however, clear that Brama includes 2 sp complexes. Brama brama Bonnaterre, a commercial sp off Spain, is bipolar in distribution in the Atlantic, occurs in the temperate South Pacific, and is replaced in the temperate North Pacific by B. Japonica Hilgendorf. A 3rd member of this complex is described, but not named, from adult material from the temperate South Pacific. All of these spp are large and have their pectoral fins set relatively low on the body. The 2nd complex, tropical forms, include the pseudopelagic allopatric sp pair B. Carbbea Mead and B. Orcini Cuvier; the circumtropical and variable B. Dussumieri Cuvier; and the central Pacific B. Myersi Mead. All are small and relatively abundant as juveniles. The Indo-Pacific Taractichthys steindachneri (Doderlein) and the Atlantic T. Longipinnis (Lowe) differ but slightly and the juveniles, here described, are indistinguishable from one another. Young are uncommon. The adults are large, possibly schooling fishes that are now taken incidental to the tuna fisheries. The 2 allopatric spp of the fanfish genus Pterycombus, P. Brama Fries and P. Petersii (Hilgendorf), appear to be pseudopelagic, for they characteristically are found off the continental shelves rather than on the high seas. Larval and juvenile stages of the former are described, chiefly from material from the Caribbean and the Gulf Stream. Adults of the 2nd genus of fanfishes, Pteraclis, are too few to permit an adequate definition of the species. The Atlantic population, confidently identified with P. Carolinus Valenciennes, spawns in the Sargasso Sea and the abundant juveniles in the 'Dana' collections are described. The Indo-Pacific material, small in quantity, is allocated somewhat arbitrarily to P. Velifera Pallas and P. Aesticola (Jordan and Snyder).

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