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Pacific blackdragon

Pacific blackdragon

Not on Exhibit

Animal Facts

  • Scientific Name

    Idiacanthus antrostomus

  • Animal Type


  • Diet

    crustaceans, shrimp, fishes

  • Size

    females to 24 inches (61 cm); males to 3 inches (8 cm)

  • Relatives

    two other species in this genus

  • Habitat

    Deep Sea

  • Range

    midwater, 328-3,280 feet (100-1,000 m); below 1,312 feet (400 m) at night

Natural History

Female blackdragons are about two feet (61 cm) long and have fanglike teeth and a long chin whisker. The males are small, about three inches (8 cm) in length, and brownish in color. They have no teeth, no chin barbel and no stomach. Unable to eat, the male lives only long enough to mate.


Anything that finds its way into the ocean, whether it's tossed away as trash, washes off a beach or falls off a boat, may eventually make its way to the deep sea. It's important to realize that the deep sea is not so far away that it's beyond the reach of human activities. Living creatures in the deep are affected by what we do at the surface.

Cool Facts

Female blackdragons use their lure to attract prey, grabbing it with their sharp teeth.

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