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Stomach Examiner's Tool

Resource Ecology and Fisheries Management Division

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Vertebral column

Vertebrae or vertebral columns are commonly found as prey remains in groundfish stomachs. The shape and number of vertebrae are species specific. Therefore, they can be usful for the identification of fish remains found in stomachs.

The general pattern of the vertebral column is expressed in the following format: T+P+C = S; where

T = Trunk (or Abdominal) vertebrae (with only neural spines)

P = Precaudal vertebrae (with haemal arches but no haemal spines)

C = Caudal vertebrae (with neural spines and haemal spines)

S = Total vertebrae

Curlfin sole vertebrae

Curlfin sole, Pleuronichthys decurrens, Vertebrae

Select a vertabrae image below.

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