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HEAD CANALS

Definition

Tubular sensory organs that run beneath the surface of the head or in grooves in many fishes. The main branches are the lateral canal, which is a forward continuation of the lateral line on the body, and a temporal canal that extends from the lateral canal towards the dorsal midline across the occipital region of the head. A preopercular- mandibular canal runs in the cheek bone and continues out toward the tip of the lower jaw; supraorbital and suborbital canals are variable. These are useful for the identification of certain species.

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