How long do they live? The Spiky Oreo is not as well studied as the Warty Oreo, but they can live to be at least 100 years old [1].

Where are they found? These little fish get around. You can find them in the Southeast Atlantic, Southwest Atlantic, Eastern Indian, and the Southwest Pacific Oceans [2].

What do they eat? The Spiky Oreo doesn’t stray far from the diet that the Warty Oreo enjoys. They eat many smaller creatures including squid and smaller fish [2].

What do they look like? There are not many pictures of Spiky Oreos; see figure 1, which is the only reusable rendition that I could find in Google images. Spiky Oreos grow to be a little over 1 foot in length and can weigh up to 4.4 pounds [2]. If you want to see a nice picture of a Spiky Oreo, please visit the “Fishes of Australia” website. If you click the underlined words you will be redirected to the website and a great picture of this unique looking fish.

fmib_45625_neocyttus_rhomboidalis
Figure 1. I swear this is a different picture than the one on the Warty Oreo page. The Spiky Oreo has a pointier face.

How do they reproduce? Spiky Oreos reproduce by spawning [2], but little else is known about their maturity age, reproductive capacity, or reproductive senescence.

How do scientists know how old they are? Otolith annuli counts.

So what are we lacking? Population information would be a good place to begin. Age validation studies may shed light on if this species can reach the impressive lifespans that their cousin, the Warty Oreo, attains. There also seems to be no data evaluating the maturity rate or reproductive senescence of Spiky Oreos. There is mitochondrial genome information available for Neocyttus rhomboidalis on NCBI.gov, but no nuclear genome data exists.

Conservation status:  Spiky Oreos have not been evaluated by the IUCN.

 

  1. Stewart, B. D. “Synopsis of the biology of commercially important species of dories and oreos (Order: Zeiformes) in southern Australasian waters: a review of the literature. Department of Conservation and Environment.”Fisheries Division, Victoria. Internal Report 196 (1992).
  2. Fishbase.org. Neocyttus rhomboidalis.  http://www.fishbase.org/country/CountrySpeciesSummary.php?c_code=516&id=9146.  Accessed 10/3/2016