Hairlip brotula

The Hairlip brotula, Cataetyx messieri, is a brotula of the genus Cataetyx, found around South America from Argentina to Chile at depths of between 656.17 and 4921.26 ft (200 and 1500 m). Their length is between 23.62 and 27.56 in (60 and 70 cm).

The Hairlip brotula is a cod-like fish, very similar to the Pink cusk eel, but with an even more pointed tail consisting of the fused dorsal and anal fins. The pelvic fin consists of one ray only, and the pectoral fin is fairly large. The skin is covered in small scales.

The color is a uniform dull brown with the underside a little lighter.

The Hairlip brotula has a viviparous method of reproduction, giving birth to only a few fully formed young.

Illustration by Dr Tony Ayling