Rostral organ

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The rostral organ of the coelacanth is a large gel-filled cavity in the snout, with three pairs of canals to the outside.[1]

It is surrounded by an insulating layer of adipose tissue and innervated by the superficial ophthalmic nerve. Its anatomy and innervation suggest it is an electroreceptive organ[2] used for finding prey in the dark. This is supported by experiments which showed that coelacanths react to electrical fields produced by a submersible.[2]


  1. ^ M., Berquist, Rachel; L., Galinsky, Vitaly; M., Kajiura, Stephen; R., Frank, Lawrence. "The coelacanth rostral organ is a unique low-resolution electro-detector that facilitates the feeding strike". Scientific Reports. 5. 
  2. ^ a b Bemis, William E.; Hetherington, Thomas E. (1982). "The Rostal Organ of Latimeria chalumnae: Morphological Evidence of an Electroreceptive Function". Copeia. 1982 (2): 467–71. JSTOR 1444635. doi:10.2307/1444635.