Chimaera carophila, a new species of chimaera from New Zealand

paper8Published online on 05. December 2014

Chimaera carophila (Chondrichthyes: Chimaeriformes: Chimaeridae), a new species of chimaera from New Zealand

Jenny M Kemper, David A Ebert, Gavin JP Naylor, Dominique Didier


A new species of chimaeroid, Chimaera carophila sp. nov., is described from 37 specimens collected from deepwater slopes and seamounts around New Zealand. The new species is distinguished from its closest congeners, Chimaera fulva Didier et al. 2008, Chimaera macrospina Didier et al. 2008, and Chimaera obscura Didier et al. 2008, by its uniform pale-brown coloration, geographic distribution, and a combination of morphological characters, including longer dorsal and ventral caudal fin bases, a shorter first dorsal fin height, a shorter dorsal fin spine, and shorter claspers that are divided distally for one-third of their length. Chimaera carophila sp. nov. also can be distinguished from closely related species in New Zealand and Australian waters based on DNA sequence divergence of the NADH2 gene. Comparisons of body size in a large sample of specimens show considerable overlap in character ranges among congeners making species distinctions difficult. New combinations of morphometrics are suggested including ratios of head length to eye length and dorsal spine length to head length, to better distinguish among species of chimaeroids that are similar in overall appearance and size. Also, a key to New Zealand and Australian Chimaera species is provided.

Bulletin of Marine Science, DOI 10.5343/bms.2014.1042



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