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Notacanthidae (spiny eel; superorder Elopomorpha, order Notacanthiformes) A small family of deep-sea fish that have a blunt snout and ventrally located mouth. The posterior half of the body tapers down to a narrow tail ending in a tiny tail fin. Typically, there are at least six short and isolated dorsal spines on the back. The long-based anal fin also has short fin rays. Spiny eels are bottom-living fish sometimes caught in trawl-nets. There are about nine species, distributed world-wide.