The intestinal floras of seven deep-sea fish retrieved at depths of from 3,200 to 5,900 m were examined for population sizes and growth responses to pressure. Large populations of culturable bacteria, ranging from 1.1 x 10(sup6) to 3.6 x 10(sup8) cells per ml of contents, were detected when samples were incubated at conditions characteristic of those of the deep sea. Culturable cell counts at in situ pressures were greater than those at atmospheric pressure in all samples. Most of the strains isolated by the spread-plating method at atmospheric pressure later proved barophilic. Barophilic bacteria were the predominant inhabitants of the abyssal fish intestines.