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Contributions from the Biological Laboratory of the U. S. Fish Commission, Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

By Carl H. Eigenmann,
Professor of Zoology, University of Indiana.

Psenes edwardsii, sp. nov.

Head 3; depth 2; D. XII-I, 30; A. III, 28; V.1, 5; lateral line about 140. Depth of head over middle of eye little less than its length; eye 1 in snout, 3.6 in head, 1.4 in interorbital; width of body at axils 2.5 in length of head; maxillary reaching front of eye; no adipose lid; top of head fatty; with few pores; pectoral broadly rounded,

1.5 in head; ventral shorter than head by half diameter of eye; highest dorsal spine 2 in head; highest dorsal ray l.75 in head. Translucent; back thickly covered with pigment cells; these extend below the lateral line, and along base of anal; abdominal region entirely free from pigment; spinous dorsal, and caudal dark; other fins dusky; a dark band on the soft dorsal and anal just beyond the scaly base.


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Type No. 49745, USNM, is a single specimen, 90 mm. long, taken about July 28, 1900, by the Schooner Grampus, from under a medusa 80 miles south of Newport, Rhode Island. This species is evidently closely related to Psenes pellucidus, from which it differs in the longer snout, smaller eye, fewer fin rays, rounded fins, etc.

I take great pleasure in asociating with this species the name of Mr. Vinal N. Edwards, who, bas been connected with the U. S. Fish Commission as collector since its establishment thirty years ago, and who assisted Prof. S. F. Baird as collector before the establishment of the Commission.

The genus Psenes is distinguished by Goode & Bean, (Oceanic Ichthyology, p. 219) from Nomeus and other genera of the Nomeidae by "Pectorals long, surpassing ventrals ...." but in their description and figure of Psenes pellucidus are given as 5 mm. longer than the pectorals. The first dorsal of Psenes is said to posess 6 to 10 spines, while Psenes Pellucidus is figured as possessing 12 spines. In the description of the family of Nomeidae the palate is said to possess teeth, while in their description of the genus Psenes teeth are described for the jaws only.

These mistakes are repeated by Jordan & Evermann in The Fishes of North and Middle America (pp. 948-950). In their synopsis of the families of the Scombroidei, Jordan & Evermann (p. 863) distinguish the Nomeida from the Stromateidae by the absence in the latter of tooth-like processes in the oesophagus. The specimen of Psenes under consideration has an enlarged esophagus with denticles like those found in the Stromateidae. As far as I am able to make out in small specimens of Nomeus the esophagus is similarly modified. The Nomeida are readily distinguished from the Stromateidae by their large number of vertebrae. END