Black Scabbard Fish
The black scabbard fish, Aphanopus carbo, is a bathypelagic cutlassfish of the family Trichiuridae found in the Atlantic Ocean between latitudes 69° N and 27° N at depths of between 180 and 1,700 m. Its length is up to 110 cm, but reaches maturity around 80 to 85 cm.
The black scabbard fish is a fish with a body that is extremely elongated, with body depth 10.8 to 13.4 times in SL. The snout is large with strong fang-like teeth. Pelvic fins represented by a single spine in juveniles but entirely absent in adults. Color is coppery black with iridescent tint. The inside of the mouth and gill cavities are black. Juveniles are believed to be mesopelagic from 100 to 500 m.
The actual discovery or first record of Espada fish being caught off the coast of Madeira was in the early 1800’s. In 1839, Richard Thomas Lowe, a British naturalist and zoologist first described the fish and soon afterwards submitted his study to the Royal Zoological Society of London. Lowe attributed the Latin name Aphanopus Carbo to the fish.