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deep sea viperfish
deep sea viperfish

Deep Sea Viperfish

The appearance of this deep sea fish would be scary as its teeth are sharp and are protruding outside its mouth.

Viperfish are the fierce sea life creatures. The appearance of this deep sea fish would be scary as its teeth are sharp and are protruding outside its mouth. The viper fish lives only in salt waters. Tropical and temperate seas are the best type of habitats for this fish. The viper fish is about thirty to sixty cm in length. They can swim at great speeds. They attack their prey with the protruding teeth and kill them. The teeth have to be curved above its mouth outside so that it can close its mouth.

Physical Appearance

The main identification of this sea life creature is its fang like teeth that are outside. These teeth resemble the fangs of viper and hence the fish is rightly named. The teeth have to be curved over the head of the viperfish and only then it can close its mouth. The viperfish has got a slender long body. The head is hinged so that the prey goes into the mouth with ease. The teeth of the viperfish are very strong and sharp. The viperfish has got a stomach which is expandable up to two times of its original size.

The fish has got a snake like body. During night time, the sharp teeth of the viperfish cannot be seen by other fish. This is because it is curved around. Thus, at nights the mouth of the viperfish acts as a hunting net for its prey.

Feeding Habits

As viperfish are small in size, they usually feed on other small fishes, crabs and insects. The main food of the viperfish is hermit crab. The fish uses its teeth for the attack. The stomach of the fish can store a lot of food and so the viperfish can live without food for several days. They are fierce in nature and hunt its prey by force.

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Behaviour of Viperfish

The vertebra at the back of its body surface acts as a shock absorber. It absorbs shock at the time of any attack by the enemy. It also got a unique light emitting part in its tail. The viperfish uses this light to attract its prey by making it to glow and off. Thus the work of hunting is made very easy. During the day time, these viper fish would be in deep waters. During the night time, they reach the shallow surfaces.


The female viperfish lays large number of eggs after mating. These eggs would be very small and so they float on the surface of the water in the middle seas. The fertilization of eggs is done externally outside the body of the female by the male viperfish. The average lifespan of a viperfish is up to thirty to forty years in a natural habitat. But under captivation, it cannot live more than few hours.

The Deep Sea Monster

Viperfish has a monstrous appearance due to its unfitting teeth outside its mouth. It has a fierce nature. A viperfish can float still in the water motionless for several hours. It is usually found at a depth of 5000 metres below the sea level. Hence it is rightly said as a deep sea monster. Sea life of the viper fish is not fully analysed as they cannot be kept under observation. The major threat to the life of these viper fish are sharks and dolphins. Any big fish would swallow the viperfish as it is too tiny.