Two bacteriophages of an environmental isolate of Vibrio parahaemolyticus were isolated and sequenced. The VP16T and VP16C phages were separated from a mixed lysate based on plaque morphology and exhibit 73 to 88% sequence identity over about 80% of their genomes. Only about 25% of their predicted open reading frames are similar to genes with known functions in the GenBank database. Both phages have cos sites and open reading frames encoding proteins closely related to coliphage lambda's terminase protein (the large subunit). Like in coliphage lambda and other siphophages, a large operon in each phage appears to encode proteins involved in DNA packaging and capsid assembly and presumably in host lysis; we refer to this as the structural operon. In addition, both phages have open reading frames closely related to genes encoding DNA polymerase and helicase proteins. Both phages also encode several putative transcription regulators, an apparent polypeptide deformylase, and a protein related to a virulence-associated protein, VapE, of Dichelobacter nodosus. Despite the similarity of the proteins and genome organization, each of the phages also encodes a few proteins not encoded by the other. We did not identify genes closely related to genes encoding integrase proteins belonging to either the tyrosine or serine recombinase family, and we have no evidence so far that these phages can lysogenize the V. parahaemolyticus strain 16 host. Surprisingly for active lytic viruses, the two phages have a codon usage that is very different than that of the host, suggesting the possibility that they may be relative newcomers to growth in V. parahaemolyticus. The DNA sequences should allow us to characterize the lifestyles of VP16T and VP16C and the interactions between these phages and their host at the molecular level, as well as their relationships to other marine and nonmarine phages.