'Penis-head' fish discovered in Vietnam

The Phallostethus cuulong had not been described scientifically before
A preserved specimen of Phallostethus cuulong, a new species of fish with a penis on its head that has been identified in the Mekong delta in Vietnam. Researchers said Wednesday that Phallostethus cuulong is the newest member of the Phallostethidae family—small fish found in Southeast Asian waters that are distinguished primarily by the positioning of the male sexual organ.

A new species of fish with a penis on its head has been identified in the Mekong Delta in Vietnam, researchers said on Wednesday.

Phallostethus cuulong is the newest member of the Phallostethidae family—small fish found in Southeast Asian waters that are distinguished primarily by the positioning of the male sexual organ.

Male phallostethids have a copulatory organ, termed the priapium, under the throat for holding or clasping onto and fertilising their internally, according to .

"We have scientifically identified a new penis-head fish in Vietnam," researcher Tran Dac Dinh from Can Tho University told AFP.

The fish was known to Vietnamese people in the Mekong Delta but had not been described scientifically before a team identified the species last year, he said.


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(c) 2012 AFP

Citation: 'Penis-head' fish discovered in Vietnam (2012, August 29) retrieved 19 February 2020 from https://phys.org/news/2012-08-penis-head-fish-vietnam.html
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