Similar assessments in deeper waters of the middle to outer shelf are lacking, aside from those obtained from submersible surveys directed toward tilefish (Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
) at depths of 117-268 m (Grimes et al., 1986).
In 2000, the Council began discussions regarding implementation of MPA's from North Carolina to the Florida Keys to protect deepwater species susceptible to overfishing (i.e., speckled hind, Epinephelus dnimmondhayv, golden tilefish, Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
', blueline tilefish, Caulolatilus microps\ snowy grouper, Hyporthodus niveatus', Warsaw grouper, Hyporthodus nigritus; misty grouper, Hyporthodus mystacinus', and yellowedge grouper, Hyporthodus flavolimbatus).
On the continental edges of the North Atlantic, the fish Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
digs holes 13 ft (4 m) wide and 10 ft (3 m) deep in the sediment, which attract a large number of crabs, fish, echinoderms, and other benthic organisms that are usually sparsely distributed over the seafloor.
Thus, observers also boarded bottom longline fishing trips that targeted shallow-water groupers (mainly red grouper, Epinephelus morio), snapper (primarily red snapper), and deepwater groupers and tilefish (yellowedge grouper, Epinephelus flavolimbatus, and tilefish, Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
As the largest malacanthid, growing to more than 1 m and 25 kg, the Tilefish (Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
) is a valuable fishery species, often marketed as "golden tilefish." The Tilefish ranges from New England to the Gulf of Mexico and into the Caribbean Sea (Freeman and Turner (1); Dooley, 1978), where 2 stocks have been identified, north or south of the Virginia and North Carolina border (Kitts et al., 2007).
Yellowedge grouper comprised 10% of the catch, followed by blueline tilefish, Caulolatilus microps, at 5%; red snapper, tilefish, Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
, and Atlantic sharpnose shark, Rhizoprionodon terraenovae, each at 3%.
macrostomum SpnGnt Speckled Hind Epinephelus drumniondhayi SpkHnd Tiger grouper Mycteroperca tigris TgrGpr Tilefish Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
Tilfsh Tomtate Haemulon aurolineatum Tomtat Vermilion snapper Rhomboplites aurorubens VrmSnp Warsaw grouper Epinephelus nigritus WrsGpr White grunt Haemulon plumieri WhtGnt Whitebone porgy Calamus leucosteus WtbPgy Wreckfish Polyprion arnericanus Wrkfsh Yellow jack Caranx bartholomaei YelJck Yellowedge grouper Epinephelus flauolimbatus YdgGpr Yellowfin grouper Mycteroperca venenosa YlfGpr Yellowmouth grouper Mycteroperca interstitalis YlmGpr Yellowtail snapper Ocyurus chrysurus YtlSnp
One of the fish was sent to the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum where it was duly described as a new species and named Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
; the common name given was tilefish (Fig.
Burrow construction and behavior of tilefish, Lopholatilus chamaeleonticeps
, in Hudson Submarine Canyon.