Family Acanthuridae 470surgeonfishes Marine all tropical and subtropical seas absent in Mediterranean

Pelvic fins with one spine and three (Naso and Paracanthus) or (usually) five soft rays dorsal fin usually with 4-9 spines and 19-31 soft rays anal fin with two or three spines and usually 19-36 soft rays. Six genera and about 80 species. The subfamilies and tribes are recognized after a 1993 study of R. Winterbottom. From the rich Eocene and Oligocene fossil record, it appears that the group was as diversified then as it is now (J. C. Tyler has many papers describing the fossil record, e.g.,...

Family Alepisauridae 195lancetfishes Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Body slender (covered with pores in Alepisaurus) scales and light organs absent dorsal fin in Alepisaurus high and extending along most of body (originating over opercle and with 29-48 rays), in Omosudis only 9-12 anal fin low with 12-18 rays pelvics abdominal with 8-10 rays mouth large teeth well developed, palatines especially long vertebrae in Alepisaurus 47-51, 39-41 in the shorter Omosudis swim bladder absent. Length up to 2 m in Alepisaurus, 20 cm in Omosudis. Omosudis was recognized in...

Family Anarhichadidae 420wolffishes Marine North Atlantic and North Pacific

Body naked or with minute cycloid scales lateral line faint, with one or two branches anteriorly or absent gill membranes attached to isthmus dorsal fin with spines only pectoral fins large pelvic fins absent (rudiments of girdle retained) caudal fin small or pointed jaws with strong conical canines anteriorly and with large molariform teeth laterally vertebrae 72-89 to more than 250. Maximum length about 2.5 m. Two genera, Anarhichas with about four species (North Atlantic and Pacific) and...

Family Anoplopomatidae 315sablefishes Marine North Pacific

Head without spines, ridges, or cirri two dorsal fins, the second with 16-21 soft rays anal fin with three weak spines and 11-19 soft rays pelvic fins with one spine and five soft rays two well-developed nostrils on each side gill membranes attached to isthmus lateral line single. Maximum length about 1.8 m, attained in Erilepis zonifer (the Skilfish). Two genera and species (Mecklenburg, 2003), Anoplopoma fimbria (with well-separated dorsal fins and 17-30 spines in first dorsal) and Erilepis...

Family Artedidraconidae 429barbeled plunderfishes Marine deepwater Antarctic

Body naked gill membranes broadly united to isthmus spinous dorsal fin present, with 1-7 flexible spines mouth protractile chin barbel present opercle with hook-shaped spine four or five hypurals vertebrae 33-41. Nelson recognized this as a subfamily of Harpagiferidae (although the two lineages are distinct, they also form a monophyletic group). It is recognized now following earlier studies by R. R. Eakin and, subsequently, by J. C. Hureau in 1986 its recognition is generally accepted (e.g.,...

Family Aspredinidae 139banjo catfishes Freshwater some brackish tropical South America

Body naked except for large tubercles arranged in longitudinal rows no adipose fin body depressed anteriorly opercular aperture reduced to a slit dorsal spine-locking mechanism absent in most species 10 or fewer caudal fin rays. Maximum length about 38 cm SL, attained in Aspredo aspredo most species less than 15 cm. Twelve genera with 36 species (de Pinna, 1998 Diogo et al., 2001 Friel and Lundberg, 1996 Friel, 2003). Much information from these studies was based on the 1994 Ph.D. dissertation...

Family Astroblepidae Argidae 133climbing catfishes Freshwater Panama and South America Andean region

Body naked or almost naked suctorial mouth disc present as in virtually all lori-cariids two pairs of barbels present, maxillary and nasal adipose fin present or absent dorsal fin with a spine and 6 or 7 soft rays dorsal fin spine lacking locking mechanism (a locking mechanism is present in the related callichthyids and loricariids) anal fin with 4-6 rays relatively short intestine 34 vertebrae (17 + 17). Some members are able to live in torrential mountain streams, up to 3500 m, and climb the...

Family Auchenoglanididae 149auchenoglanidids Freshwater Africa

Anterior nostrils on anteroventral side of upper lip caudal fin rounded. Often formerly placed in the Bagridae (as in Nelson, 1994), this taxon was considered a subfamily of Claroteidae by Mo (1991) as followed by Teugels (2003), but recognized by de Pinna (1998), as here, as a sister group to Malapteruridae. Six genera, Anaspidoglanis, Auchenoglanis, Liauchenoglanis, Notoglanidium, Parauchenoglanis, and Platyglanis, with about 28 species (Teugels, 2003 Geerinckx et al., 2004).

Family Bathylutichthyidae 326Antarctic sculpins Marine Antarctic Ocean south Georgia Island

Body naked wide interorbital one pair of long barbels on lower jaw at corner of mouth single dorsal with anterior portion submerged under the skin, with 13 spines and 28 soft rays anal fin with 36 rays pelvic fin with 3 soft rays all fin rays unbranched teeth absent on vomer and palatines branchiostegal rays seven radials two postcleithrum and pleural ribs absent vertebrae 49. Except for the elongate barbels and the caudal fin being joined with the dorsal and anal fins, the one known specimen...

Family Brachionichthyidae 231handfishes warty anglers Marine southern Australia primarily off Tasmania

Body deep skin naked or covered with denticles second and third dorsal spines united by a membrane gill opening small, behind base of pectoral fin soft dorsal fin rays 15-18, unbranched anal fin rays 7-10 pelvic fin with one spine and four soft rays parietals meeting on midline pectoral radials 2. Maximum length 15 cm. They are benthic, occurring in inshore waters at depths up to 60 m. One genus, Brachionichthys, with about four species there are three additional undescribed species (e.g.,...

Family Caesionidae 371fusiliers Marine Indo West Pacific

Ascending premaxillary process as a separate ossification from premaxilla dorsal fin continuous with 10-15 slender spines and 8-22 soft rays anal fin with three spines and 9-13 soft rays mouth slightly upturned, small, and highly protrusible jaw teeth small (absent in two species) caudal fin deeply forked lateral line scales 45-88 seven branchiostegal rays 24 vertebrae. Fusiliers are planktivorous in contrast to the snappers, which tend to be ben-thic carnivores. Maximum length about 60 cm. For...

Family Callichthyidae 131callichthyid armored catfishes Freshwater Panama and South America

Body with two rows of overlapping bony plates on each side swim bladder encased in bone mouth small and ventral one or two pairs of well-developed barbels present, and shorter processes usually on upper jaw and on lower jaw dorsal and pectoral fins with strong spine spine at anterior border of adipose fin. Some species can move short distances on land by utilizing air in vascular hindgut. Two subfamilies with eight genera and about 177 species (Reis, 2003c). Reis (1998) discussed the fossil...

Family Caracanthidae 305orbicular velvetfishes Marine Indian and Pacific

Body oval, extremely compressed, and covered with small rough papillae mouth small and terminal one dorsal fin with a notch, origin on nape, with 6-8 spines and 11-14 soft rays anal fin with two spines and 11-14 soft rays pectoral fins with 12-15 rays pelvic fins inconspicuous, with one spine and two or three small soft rays gill openings restricted to sides scales below the dorsal fin base and on the dorsal surface of the head (the latter are minute and bear a single spine) and tubelike scales...

Family Caulophrynidae 234fanfins Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

No distal bulb with light organ on illicium mature males feed in parasitic fashion on females pelvic fins in larvae (only ceratioid with pelvics at some stage) two pectoral radials (all other ceratioids have 3-5) dorsal fin with six (in Robia) or 14-22 normal rays, and anal fin with 5 (in Robia) or 12-19 rays (other ceratioids have 13 or fewer anal fin rays) extremely elongate dorsal and anal rays eight caudal fin rays. Two genera, Robia, monotypic, and Caulophryne (4), with five species (e.g.,...

Family Ceratiidae 242seadevils Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Females with two or three rays modified into caruncles (low fleshy appendages) in front of soft dorsal fin cleft of mouth vertical to strongly oblique parietals large mature males feed in parasitic fashion on females dorsal fin soft rays usually four, rarely five anal fin rays four larvae humpbacked. Maximum length at least 77 cm, up to 1.2 m (Ceratias holboelli). Two genera, Ceratias (3) and the monotypic Cryptopsaras, with four species.

Family Cetopsidae 127whalelike catfishes Freshwater South America

Body naked three pairs of barbels (no nasals) anal fin with long base, usually 20--49 rays body naked and lacking bony plates pectoral and dorsal fins lacking spines (except in a few cetopsines). Seven genera (see below) with 23 species (Vari and Ferraris, 2003). Subfamily Cetopsinae. No adipose fin swim bladder highly reduced and enclosed in bony capsule dorsal fin far forward. Maximum length about 26 cm SL. Six genera, Bathycetopsis (1), Cetopsis (2), Denticetopsis (2), Hemicetopsis (1),...

Family Chacidae 150squarehead angler or frogmouth catfishes Freshwater eastern India to Borneo

Head broad, long, and depressed body compressed posteriorly mouth terminal, very wide three or four pairs of small barbels (nasals if present, minute) eyes very small dorsal fin with one short spine and four soft rays anal fin with 8-10 soft rays pectoral fin with one serrated spine and four or five soft rays pelvic fins large, with six rays adipose fin confluent with caudal fin gill rakers absent branchiostegal rays 6-8 vertebrae 31-35 (14-16 abdominals). Maximum length about 24 cm. On...

Family Chlorophthalmidae 189greeneyes Marine tropical to temperate deepsea benthic Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Single elongate supramaxilla monoecious mode of reproduction eyes large, normal pseudobranch present tip of upper jaw not extending beyond orbit pyloric caeca present dorsal fin rays 9-13 anal fin rays 7-11 pectoral fin rays 15-19 branchiostegal rays 8 vertebrae 38-50. Two genera, Chlorophthalmus (17) and Parasudis (2), with about 19 species (e.g., Sato and Nakabo, 2002a Thompson, 2003a). See under Paraulopidae above concerning the removal of some species previously placed in Chlorophthalmus.

Family Creediidae 438sandburrowers Marine Indo West Pacific South Africa to Hawaii and Easter Island

Row of cirri bordering lower jaw dorsally projecting knob at symphysis of lower jaw snout fleshy, projecting beyond lower jaw lateral line descending abruptly or gradually to ventral surface lateral line scales, except for anteri-ormost ones, with posterior extension, often trilobed body largely scaleless in a few species (lateral line scales always present) dorsal fin continuous, with 12-43 unbranched soft rays pelvis uniquely shaped, like an inverted bowl pelvic fin with one spine and 3-5...

Family Cyclopteridae 327lumpfishes lumpsuckers Marine cooler regions of the Northern Hemisphere

Body globose, usually covered with tubercles usually two short dorsal fins, the first with 4-8 spines (the spinous fin is beneath the skin in some species and not externally visible), the second with 8-13 soft rays, never confluent with caudal anal fin short, with 7-13 soft rays vertebrae about 23-29. Maximum length up to 60 cm. About six genera, Aptocyclus (synonym Pelagocyclus), Cyclopterus, Cyclopteropsis, Cyclopsis, Eumicrotremus, and Lethotremus, and 28 species (Mecklenburg and Sheiko,...

Family Derichthyidae 83longneck eels Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Series of parallel striations on the head forming part of a sensory system branchial region not expanded, with body behind gill opening somewhat compressed pectoral fins present dorsal fin origin behind tip of pectoral fin anus well behind midlength lateral line virtually complete vertebrae 125-160 adults mesopelagic to bathypelagic. Maximum length about 60 cm. Two genera, the monotypic Derichthys with a short snout and Nessorhamphus containing two species with relatively long snouts (C. H....

Family Embiotocidae 410surfperches Coastal marine rarely in freshwater North Pacific

Molde Pico Pajaro

Dorsal fin continuous, with 6-11 spines (except 15-19 in Hysterocarpus traski) and 9-28 soft rays anal fin with three spines and 15-35 soft rays lateral line high on body, complete (but not on caudal fin) scales cycloid, generally 35-75 in lateral line caudal fin forked. Viviparous (impregnation by the male is aided by the thickened forward end of the anal fin, and embryos may rely on connections to maternal tissue for developmental requirements). Maximum length about 45 cm, attained in...

Family Epigonidae 353deepwater cardinalfishes Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Differ from apogonids in having vertebrae usually 25 infraorbitals more than six ascending processes of premaxillaries reduced or absent rostral cartilage greatly enlarged soft dorsal and anal fins covered with scales. Sphyraenops has three opercular spines as do serranids. Maximum length about 58 cm. Six genera, Brinkmannella, Epigonus, Norenciella, Microichthys, Rosenblattia, and Sphyraenops, with roughly 25 species (e.g., McCosker and Long, 1997 Gon, 2003). Family SILLAGINIDAE (354) sillagos...

Family Erythrinidae 122trahiras Freshwater South America

Gape long, extending beyond anterior margin of orbit body cylindrical five branchiostegal rays pectoral fin rays relatively few, 9-14 dorsal fin with 8-15 rays (plus three rudimentary ones), origin in front of anal fin and usually over pelvic fins (males of Erythrinus can have an elongated dorsal fin) anal fin short, 10-11 rays adipose fin absent caudal fin rounded scales relatively large, 34-47 in lateral line numerous teeth on palate. Some are predators. Some can breathe air and move across...

Family Giganturidae 198telescopefishes Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Eyes large, tubular, and directed forward mouth large, extending well behind eyes sharp depressible teeth in mouth greatly expandable stomach pectoral fins high on body, above gill opening, with 30-43 rays skin loose body scaleless pelvic fin, adipose fin, and branchiostegal rays in larvae but lost during transformation caudal fin forked with some rays in lower lobe greatly elongated no premaxilla, orbitosphenoid, parietal, symplectic, gill rakers, posttemporal, supratemporal, or cleithrum no...

Family Gnathanacanthidae 308red velvetfishes Marine southern Western Australia South Australia Victoria and Tasmania

Subrectangular fleshy pad in intermandibular area pelvic fins present, with one spine and five soft rays two separate dorsal fins of about equal length, the first with seven spines, the second with three spines and 8-10 soft rays anal fin with three spines and eight or nine soft rays pectoral fin with 10-12 rays body scale-less, with soft skin two large spines on opercle, may be concealed by skin vertebrae 28-30. The spines can inflict painful wounds. Maximum length 30 cm. One species,...

Family Grammicolepididae 287tinselfishes Marine scattered parts of Atlantic and Pacific

Scales narrow and greatly elongate vertically. Subfamily Macrurocyttinae. Pelvic fin, in addition to the spine, with two inconspicuous soft rays spinous dorsal elevated, with five spines (strong, all but one relatively short) soft dorsal rays 27, and anal fin with 22 soft rays pectoral rays 15. Luzon (Philippines). One species, Macrurocyttus acanthopodus. Subfamily Grammicolepidinae. Mouth small, nearly vertical dorsal fin with 5-7 spines and 27-34 soft rays anal fin with two spines and 27-35...

Family Hypopomidae 163bluntnose knifefishes Freshwater Panama and South America

Teeth absent on oral jaws snout relatively short, not tubular nostrils well separated anal-fin origin below or posterior to pectoral-fin base. Maximum length only 35 cm, attained in Brachyhypopomus brevirostris the smallest gym-notiform is Hypopygus lepturus, reaching only 9 cm TL. The common names grass and leaf knifefishes may also be used for this group. Seven genera, Brachyhypopomus (7), Hypopomus (1, synonym Parupygus), Hypopygus (2), Microsternarchus (1), Racenisia (1), Steatogenys (3),...

Family Inermiidae 375bonnetmouths Marine western tropical Atlantic

Dorsal fins separated by a deep notch, first fin with 10 (first genus below) or 17 spines (second genus) and second fin with two spines and 10 soft rays or 9 soft rays, respectively anal fin with three spines and 8 or 10 soft rays teeth absent on jaws, vomer, and palatine two enlarged chin pores caudal fin deeply forked 26 vertebrae (12 or 13 abdominal). These fishes are planktivo-rous and have a highly protrusible upper jaw. Maximum length about 25 cm. This family is probably a haemulid...

Family Labridae 412wrasses Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Fiskens Delar

Mouth protractile jaw teeth mostly separate, usually projecting outward dorsal fin with 8-21 spines (usually fewer than 15) and 6-21 soft rays anal fin with 2-6 spines (usually three) and 7-18 soft rays scales cycloid, generally large to moderate with 25-80 along side (but may be small and exceed 100) lateral line continuous or interrupted vertebrae usually 23-42. Gomphosus has an elongate snout. This family is one of the most diversified of all fish families in shape, color, and size. Many...

Family Labrisomidae 449labrisomid blennies Marine most tropical Atlantic and Pacific

Scales cycloid, with radii only on anterior margin (scales absent in five of the six species of the New World genus Stathmonotus and in one species of Neoclinus from Taiwan) and never small and embedded cirri often present on nape, nostril, and above eye dorsal fin with more spines than soft rays (some species with only spines) only Xenomedea and eastern Pacific species of Starksia are viviparous, and only Starksia has intromittent organ in males (but of a different type than in clinids). The...

Family Lophotidae 204crestfishes Marine most oceans

Body with small deciduous cycloid scales (sometimes appearing naked) anal fin small, near caudal and with 5-20 rays caudal fin normal pelvic fin, absent or with 2-6 rays dorsal fin very long with about 220-392 rays and originating above or before tip of snout swim bladder present ink sac present, which discharges into cloaca vertebrae 124-200. The extinct Protolophotus is known from Oligocene deposits in Iran. Maximum length about 200 cm. Two genera, Lophotus and Eumecichthys (e.g., Olney,...

Family Mormyridae 67elephantfishes Freshwater tropical Africa and Nile

Anal, caudal, and pelvic fins present caudal peduncle narrow caudal fin deeply forked teeth present on parasphenoid and tongue 6-8 branchiostegal rays dorsal fin rays 12-91 anal fin rays 20-70 dorsal and anal fins usually opposite and placed back on body vertebrae 37-64. The mouth is extremely variable in mormyrids. In some there is a very elongate proboscislike snout with a terminal mouth (e.g., Gnathonemus curvirostris) in a few there is an elongate lower jaw (e.g., Gnathonemus petersix),...

Family Notacanthidae 73spiny eels Deepsea worldwide

Branchiostegal membranes at least partly joined at least part of the dorsal fin posterior to the anus lateral line not cavernous and well up on the side scales relatively small, more than 50 longitudinal rows occur on each side some with the unique feature of having as many as three spinelike rays in each pelvic fin. Lipogenys. Mouth small, toothless, and suctorial lower jaw short, lying within the suckerlike opening branchiostegal rays 5-7 gill rakers absent pectoral girdle somewhat...

Family Notosudidae Scopelosauridae 191waryfishes Marine Subarctic to Subantarctic

Dorsal fin rays 9-14 anal fin rays 16-21 pectoral fin rays 10-15 lateral line scales 44-65 no swim bladder no photophores larvae with maxillary teeth (all other larvae of the order lack teeth) vertebrae 42-66. Three genera, Ahliesaurus, Luciosudis, and Scopelosaurus (synonym Notosudis), with 19 species (Bertelsen et al., 1976 Paxton and Niem, 1999 Thompson, 2003a).

Family Paralepididae 196barracudinas Marine all oceans Arctic to Antarctic

Dorsal fin origin in middle of trunk, fin rays 7-16 (fin absent in Anotopterus, but adipose fin well developed) anal fin base long, with 20-50 rays (14-16 in Anotopterus) pectoral fin rays 11-17 body scales present or absent no swim bladder vertebrae 53-121. Superfically resemble sphyraenids. Maximum length about 1 m. Anotopterus pharao (Daggertooth) (lower figure), recognized in its own family, Anotopteridae, in Nelson (1994), as sister to the paralepidids, is placed in this family. Genera...

Family Pataecidae 307Australian prowfishes Marine Australia

No pelvic fins very long continuous dorsal fin extending from head to tail (connected with or free from caudal fin), with 19-25 spines and 7-17 soft rays anal fin with 5-11 spines and 3-7 soft rays pectoral fin with eight rays all fin rays unbranched body scaleless (smooth or with tubercles or papillae) fleshy extension on the anterior isthmus suborbital stay absent vertebrae 34-44. Maximum length 30 cm. The modifier Australian has been added to the common name of the family in order to avoid...

Family Percophidae 439duckbills Marine Atlantic Indo West Pacific and southeast Pacific

Head depressed eyes usually large and interorbital space narrow spinous dorsal, if present, separate from soft dorsal anal fin with or without a single spine pelvic fin with one spine and five soft rays, interpelvic space wide. Eleven genera and about 44 species. Subfamily Percophinae. Tropical western Atlantic. Dorsal fins with eight or nine spines and about 31 soft rays anal fin with one weak spine and about 38-42 soft rays lower jaw projecting past upper caudal fin with 13 branched rays...

Family Phosichthyidae Photichthyidae 181lightfishes Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

General body shape similar to the gonostomatids serial photophores having a lumen and a duct gill rakers well developed in young and adults usually two supramaxillaries adipose fin present except in Yarrella 10-16 dorsal fin rays 12-33 anal fin rays 11-22 branchiostegal rays, 4-7 on epihyal barbel on lower jaw absent. This taxon is probably paraphyletic. Reasons for now accepting Phosichthyidae as the spelling of the family name are given in Nelson et al. (2004 211). Seven genera,...

Family Plotosidae 151eeltail catfishes Marine brackish and freshwater Indian Ocean and western Pacific from Japan to

Body eel-like, tail pointed or bluntly rounded usually four pairs of barbels no adipose fin caudodorsal fin rays may extend far forward (i.e., two dorsal fins, the second of which is confluent with the caudal), and lower procurrent caudal rays join the long anal fin to form a continuous fin branchiostegal rays 7-14. As with some other catfishes, some of these can inflict painful wounds. Ten genera, Anodontiglanis (1), Cnidoglanis (3), Euristhmus (2), Neosiluroides (1), Neosilurus (12),...

Family Pomatomidae 359bluefishes Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

The Fishes Indian Pacific

Dorsal fins separate, the first with seven or eight short spines and the second with one spine and 23-28 soft rays anal fin with two or three spines and 23-27 soft rays soft dorsal and anal fins covered with scales jaw teeth prominent, ankylosed preoperculum with a membrane flap over the suboperculum black blotch at base of pectoral 26 vertebrae. Maximum length 1.1 m. The cosmopolitan Pomatomus saltatrix (Bluefish) is described as being a voracious predator, killing more fish than it can...

Family Psych Roluti Dae 325fathead sculpins Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Body naked or with plates bearing prickles interorbital space usually greater than exposed eye diameter (much smaller in Malacocottus) lateral line reduced, with 20 or fewer pores pelvic fin with one spine and three soft rays dorsal fins usually continuous with spinous dorsal, often partially hidden by skin (bases separate or nearly so in Malacocottus and Dasycottus) branchioste-gal rays seven prevomerine teeth present or absent, palatine teeth always absent one or two postorbitals (if two,...

Family Regalecidae 207oarfishes Marine all oceans

Scales absent no anal fin pelvic fin very elongate, slender, with one ray dorsal fin very long, originating distinctly behind tip of snout, with 260-412 rays, the first few rays being elongate and bright red eye small no teeth swim bladder absent vertebrae about 143-170. R& galecus glesne (Oarfish or King-of-the-Herring) has 40-58 gill rakers Agrostichthys parkeri (Streamer Fish) has 8-10 gill rakers. This group is probably responsible for many sea-serpent stories. Maximum length up to about...

Family Scoloplacidae 132spiny dwarf catfishes Freshwater South America Peru Bolivia Brazil and Paraguay

Body with two bilateral series of odontode-bearing plates and one midventral series of plates rostral plate with numerous recurved odontodes odontodes on many other parts of body dorsal fin with stout smooth spine and 3-5 soft rays anal fin with 5 or 6 soft rays adipose fin absent caudal fin with 10-12 principal rays vomer absent exoccipitals absent. Maximum length about 20 mm SL. This is the second-most recent family of catfish to be discovered in the sense that the first species in it was not...

Family Stomiidae 182barbeled dragonfishes Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

No true gill rakers in adults one infraorbital bone (other stomiiforms have 2-6) one or no supramaxillaries mesopterygoid reduced in size or absent photophores without ducts or lumen mental barbel in most, associated with hyoid apparatus pectoral fin rays absent in Tactostoma, Idiacanthus, Photostomias, and some species of Eustomias most are darkish in color. Fink (1985) combined six barbeled families formerly recognized in the superfamilies Stomioidea and Astronethoidea into the one family,...

Family Stylephoridae 203tubeeyes or threadtails Marine abyssal most oceans

Body ribbonlike dorsal fin extending from nape to tail, with 115-124 rays anal fin short, 15-17 rays pectoral fin rays 10 or 11, base horizontal pelvic fin with only one ray caudal fin in two parts, upper with five rays and lower with two extremely elongate rays eyes large, telescopic, may be directed forward or upward mouth small and protractile teeth small no swim bladder about 50 vertebrae. This fish swims in a vertical position, head uppermost. It occurs at depths of about 300-800 m....

Family Trachipteridae 206ribbonfishes Marine Arctic Atlantic including Mediterranean Indian and Pacific

The Fishes Indian Pacific

Body naked, with deciduous cycloid scales, or with deciduous modified ctenoid scales (tubercles may also be present) no anal fin caudal fin long and at a right angle to the body, consisting of upper lobe only (Desmodema has the few caudal rays parallel to the caudal peduncle) pelvic fins with 1-10 rays dorsal fin very long, originating distinctly behind tip of snout eyes large teeth present ribs absent swim bladder rudimentary or absent vertebrae 62-111. Allometric growth results in various...

Family Trichodontidae 434sandfishes Marine North Pacific

Mouth nearly vertical, with fringed lips preopercle with five sharp spines body scaleless two dorsal fins, separated, the first with 8-16 spines and the second with 0-1 spine and 12-20 soft rays anal fin with 0-1 spine and 28-32 soft rays vertebrae 44-52. Normal habitat is lying partly buried in the bottom. Maximum length about 30 cm. Two species, Arctoscopus japonicus (Alaska to Korea) and Trichodon trichodon (northern California to Alaska) (Mecklenburg, 2003). Family PINGUIPEDIDAE (435)...

Family Trichonotidae 437sanddivers Marine Indo West Pacific

Eye with dorsal iris flap consisting of numerous elongate strands extending over lens lower jaw projecting beyond upper jaw anterior rays of dorsal fin in males of at least some species elongated pelvic fin with one spine and five soft rays lateral line on midside of body predorsal bone between first two neural spines postcleithrum present lateral line scales with a deep V-shaped notch in the posterior margin. The families Trichonotidae, Creediidae, and Percophidae may form a monophyletic...

Family Triodontidae 508threetooth puffers Marine Indo West Pacific

Three fused teeth in jaws (upper jaw with a median suture, the lower without) pelvis present dorsal and anal fins usually with 11 rays (a small spiny dorsal fin of one or two rays is present in most specimens from Indonesia to Japan) ribs and epipleurals present caudal fin with 12 principal rays and numerous procurrent rays, deeply forked. Maximum length about 48 cm. An Eocene fossil, Triodon antiquus, is very similar to the one extant species. One species, Triodon macropterus (synonym...

Family Xiphiidae 476swordfishes Marine tropical and subtropical seas

Bill depressed scales absent in adult pelvic fins and girdle absent jaws toothless in adult caudal peduncle in adult with single median keel on each side 26 vertebrae. Swordfish are a valuable commercial species. Length up to 4.5 m. There is abundant evidence that the Xiphiidae and Istiophordae are sister groups. In addition to less visible characters, both groups share the following features elongate premaxillary bill (rostrum) in adults mouth inferior fin-lets absent behind dorsal and anal...

Family Zanclidae 469Moorish Idols Marine tropical Indo Pacific

Caudal peduncle unarmed spine at corner of mouth in juveniles and protuberances in front of eyes in adults. The Moorish Idol is most commonly found in coral-reef areas. The extended snout in the adult is well suited for foraging for invertebrates and algae in small crevices. The broad vertical black bars on a largely whitish background and elongated dorsal fin filament make it a very attractive fish. The butterfly-fish, Heniochus acuminatus, another popular aquarium fish, and the Moorish Idol...

Introduction

Fishes exhibit enormous diversity in their morphology, in the habitats they occupy, and in their biology. This diversity is, in part, what makes understanding their evolutionary history and establishing a classification so difficult. From hagfishes and lampreys to sharks, flatfishes, and lungfishes, they include a vast array of distantly related vertebrates. Based on cladistic classification, the ray-finned fishes, the dominant fish group in numbers of species, are more closely related to...

Joseph S Nelson Professor Emeritus of Biological Sciences

Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2E9 Canada This book is printed on acid-free paper. Copyright 2006 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey. Published simultaneously in Canada. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, scanning, or otherwise, except as...

Morphological Diversity

Fishes range in size from an 8-10-millimeter (mm) adult goby in the Indian Ocean (some other groups have some almost equally small species, e.g., cyprinids and schindleriids) to the giant 12-m Whale Shark. They have stringlike to ball-shaped bodies. Some species are brilliantly colored others are drab. Some are sleek and graceful, moving with little resistance through the water (which is 800 times denser than air) others are described by the general public as ugly and grotesque, their...

Numbers

The species numbers of fishes given in the text, as in previous editions, are intended to be conservative estimates of valid described species, not of all named species nor of what might be undescribed. They are based, as far as possible, on the latest taxonomic revisions of families and genera and the opinions of the specialists. I regard subspecies as a valid category, with subspecies as a taxon having their own evolutionary history in allopatry and being important in management and...

O

One genus, Hippocampus, with about 36 species (e.g., Kuiter 2001, 2003 Lourie et al., 1999 Lourie and Randall, 2003). Infraorder Aulostomoida. Teeth small or absent lateral line well developed to absent usually four or five (rarely three) branchiostegal rays gills comblike (not lobate) postcleithrum present. Superfamily Aulostomoidea. Anterior four vertebrae elongate three median, well-developed bones dorsally behind head (nuchal plates) usually six (rarely five) soft pelvic rays. Family...

Order Gymnotiformes 32American knifefishes

Body eel-like (compressed or cylindrical) pelvic girdle and fins absent dorsal fin absent (but see family Apteronotidae) anal fin extremely long (more than 100 rays and extending from near pectoral-fin origin to near posterior tip of body) and employed in forward and backward movements caudal fin absent or greatly reduced (present only in the apteronotids) restricted gill openings anal opening under head or pectorals basal pterygiophores to anal fin with only one section (radial) and a...

Order Stephanoberyciformes Xenoberyces in part 52prickle

Body usually roundish palate toothless skull bones, in general, exceptionally thin orbitosphenoid absent (except present in Hispidoberyx) subocular shelf absent supramaxilla absent or reduced. Johnson and Patterson (1993) discussed the uniquely modified extrascapular. Recognition of this order follows Johnson and Patterson (1993). However, Moore (1993) had a different view of the interrelationships of the taxa placed in the orders Stephanoberyciformes and Beryciformes that warrants...

Preface

One purpose dominated the writing of the previous editions of Fishes of the World (Nelson, 1976, 1984, 1994) to present a modern introductory systematic treatment of all major fish groups, both fossil and living. The same objective prevailed in writing this revision. The acceptance of the previous three editions as a guide and reference to the classification of fishes by teachers of courses in ichthyology or fish biology, collection managers, aquarists, and by ichthyologists and other...

TClass Conodonta

The phylogenetic position of conodonts, known in the fossil record from the Cambrian to the Late Triassic and important as biostratigraphic indicators, has long been subject to much speculation. Some earlier workers thought that they might be related to early fishes (and therefore included in the chordates in Nelson, 1976). It has only been since the early 1990s, with the discovery of fossilized soft body parts, evidence of cellular bone, and a study of tooth histology, that convincing evidence...

TFamily Mayomyzontidae Teeth absent

The only species assigned to this family, Mayomyzon pieckoensis, described in 1968, is known from the Pennsylvanian Period (about 300,000,000 years ago) in Illinois from the same geological horizon as the fossil hagfish Myxinikela (Bardack, 1998). The specimens are all small in size but have adult characteristics. They are known from marine beds but need not have been marine themselves. Their known character states were compared to other lampreys in Gill et al. (2003). A second species of...

Unranked 1a Onychodontida

FOrder ONYCHODONTIFORMES (Struniiformes). Position uncertain but hypothesized to be sister to the rhipidistians (all other vertebrates). A poorly known Middle to Upper Devonian group (e.g., Onychodus and Strunius). Long (2001), in discussing the relationships of this taxon to other sarcopterygians, suggested that Psarolepis may be the sister taxon to Onychodus, and the most basal member of the onychodontiform lineage. fOrder POROLEPIFORMES (Holoptychiiformes). Body plump pectorals inserted...

Family Malapteruridae 148electric catfishes Freshwater tropical Africa and Nile

Electrogenic organ present, derived from anterior body musculature and lining the body cavity dorsal fin absent fin spines absent adipose fin far back caudal fin rounded three pairs of barbels (nasal pair absent) pectoral girdle loosely attached to skull swimbladder with an elongate posterior chamber, two chambers in Malapterurus and three in Paradoxoglanis. Produce strong stunning electrical current some other catfishes have electroreceptive systems, but only malapterurids have a...

Family Dinolestidae 357longfinned pikes Marine southern Australia

Body shape much like Sphyraena lower jaw extending beyond upper jaw vomer and palatine with teeth, some teeth in mouth caninelike head, including maxilla, snout, and occiput covered with scales axillary scale at pelvic base dorsal fins widely separated, first with four or five visible spines, second with one short spine and 17-19 soft rays anal fin with one short spine and 25-28 soft rays lateral line scales about 63-70, cycloid lateral line continuing onto caudal fin vertebrae 27 (10 + 17)....

Family Mirapinnidae 274tapertails Marine Atlantic Indian and western Pacific

Anomalopidae

No scales gill membranes separate and free from isthmus dorsal and anal fins opposite one another pelvic fins jugular, 4-10 rays 3-5 branchiostegal rays vertebrae 42-55. The first specimen of this group was collected in 1911. At one time they were placed in order, Mirapinnati. All specimens are immature and 6 cm or less. Three genera and five species (one undescribed) (e.g., Paxton, 2003). Body moderately elongate, covered with short hairlike pile two halves of caudal fin overlapping large,...

Unranked 4a Unnamed Osteolepidiformes Elipistostegalia Tetrapoda

Body slender pectorals usually inserted low on body thick rhombic scales pineal foramen present. About five families (based on work of H.-P. Schultze in 1993 and Cloutier and Ahlberg, 1996), Canowindridae, Megalichthyidae (e.g., Megalichthys), Osteolepididae (e.g., Osteolepis, and perhaps Thursius), Tristichopteridae ( Eusthenopteridae) (Eusthenopteron is one of the best known of all fossil fishes), and Rhizodopsidae. Gogonasus is included within the osteolepidiforms,...

Superorder Protacanthopterygii

As stated in Nelson (1994) and still regarded as true, the classification of the protacanthopterygians has been and continues to be unstable, largely because the many characters exhibit a mosaic distribution, show reduction, are otherwise highly modified, or are primitive for the euteleosts. The composition of this assemblage over the past many decades has undergone much reduction, largely as a result of Rosen (1973a). In Nelson (1984) I recognized it with the one order, Salmoniformes,...

Series Atherinomorpha

Pectoral actinosts caudal skeleton usually with two large triangular hypural plates, never more than four swim bladder physoclistous. The protrusible upper jaw differs from that of other acanthopterygians in lacking a ball-and-socket joint between the palatine and maxilla (a feature that prevents the pre-maxillaries from being locked in the protruded position) and in lacking crossed rostral ligaments extending between the palatines and the heads of the premaxillaries (however, Odontesthes...

Family Normanichthyidae 317normanichthyids Marine off Peru and Chile

Body covered with ctenoid scales head unarmed pelvic fin with one spine and five soft rays no ribs. One species, Normanichthys crockeri. Suborder Cottoidei. The recognition of two monophyletic lineages, ranked as superfamilies, follows the conclusions of M. Yabe in his 1985 study. However, monophyly of the suborder itself is not certain. We have a great deal of evidence that our present understanding of relationships is not only weak, but it is wrong. However, it is as yet impossible to erect a...

Family Chilodontidae 114headstanders Freshwater northern South America

Premaxilla relatively small, maxilla much enlarged uppermost of three post-cleithra typical of the order missing 7-10 branched dorsal fin rays lateral line scales about 25-31 sixth lateral-line scale smaller than the other scales highly modified pharyngeal apparatus single series of relatively small teeth movably attached to jaws. Maximum length 18 cm. Two genera, Caenotropus (3) and Chilodus (4), with seven species (Vari and Raredon, 2003). Family CRENUCHIDAE (115) South American darters....

Family Chaenopsidae 450tube blennies Warm seas of North and South America

Fishes The South Pacific

Body naked no lateral line (three pores at most behind opercle) maxilla not visible externally some species with anterior portion of dorsal fin much higher than rest dorsal fin with 17-28 spines and 10-38 soft rays (total rays 29-57) anal fin with two spines and 19-38 soft rays pectoral fin with 12-15 rays caudal fin separate or variously united with dorsal and anal fins orbital and nasal cirri variously present or absent (cirri on nape absent) palatines with teeth head often spiny or rough...

Acknowledgments

Many individuals helped me in various ways with the preparation of this edition. They are greater in number than given below. I am grateful to them all. I greatly enjoy and benefit from seeing colleagues at meetings, from students to longtime friends (who sadly grow fewer in number as the years go by). Valuable help was received over the years during visits to museums, and I express my gratitude to museum curators who have been patient with overdue loans while this work was completed. The...

Order Squaliformes 10dogfish sharks

Two dorsal fins, with or without spines anal fin absent five gill slits spiracles present nictitating lower eyelid absent lateral-line canal closed (as it is in most euselachians). The Echinorhinidae, placed in this order in Nelson (1994), is now placed in its own order following de Carvalho (1996). Three of the families now recognized were regarded as subfamilies of Dalatiidae in Nelson (1994) (see Dalatiidae). Six families, 24 genera, and at least 97 species. Family SQUALIDAE (34) dogfish...

Appendix

Checklist of the classes (numbered), extant subclasses (not numbered), extant orders (numbered), extant suborders (not numbered), and extant families (numbered). Page number given for all. Order 1. Myxiniformes, 22 Family 1. Myxinidae, 22 Class 2. Petromyzontida, 24 Order 2. Petromyzontiformes, 24 Family 2. Petromyzontidae, 25 Family 3. Geotriidae, 26 Family 4. Mordaciidae, 27 Class 3. Placodermi, 35 Class 4. Chondrichthyes, 39 Subclass Holocephali, 42 Family 5. Callorhinchidae...

Family Myctophidae 200lanternfishes Marine all oceans Arctic to Antarctic

Cartilaginous supporting plate below the adipose fin small supramaxilla present in some genera subocular shelf present origin of anal fin under or short distance behind dorsal fin base small photophores arranged in groups and rows on head and body (except in one species) scales usually cycloid (ctenoid in four species) swim bladder present (except in adults of a few species) vertebrae 28-45. Myctophids are heavily consumed by numerous marine fishes and mammals. Most undergo a diurnal migration...

Subclass Elasmobranchii

Five to seven separate gill openings on each side dorsal fin s and spines, if present, are rigid males without clasper organ on head dermal placoid scales usually present palatoquadrate upperjaw not fused to cranium suspension amphistylic or hyostylic branchial basket mostly behind the neurocranium tooth replacement relatively rapid teeth numerous some ribs usually present spiracle opening remains of hyoidean gill slit usually present. As noted in Maisey 2001b , in modern elasmobranchs the...

Biological Diversity

Fish behavior is as diverse as fish morphology. Some species travel in schools, while others are highly territorial. Interesting commensal relationships exist with other fishes and other animals. Fishes are adapted to a wide variety of foods. Some are specialized or highly adapted to feed on such items as zooplankton, snails, and coral. Almost all classes of animal and some plants can serve as food. A few species have a parasitic mode of feeding on other species or on the female of their own....

Phylum Chordata

Chordates are placed in the superphylum Deuterostomia. The possible relationships of the chordates and deuterostomes to other metazoans are discussed in Halanych 2004 . He restricts the taxon of deuterostomes to the chordates and their proposed immediate sister group, a taxon comprising the hemichordates, echinoderms, and the wormlike Xenoturbella. The phylum Chordata has been used by most recent workers to encompass members of the subphyla Urochordata tunicates or sea-squirts , Cephalochordata...

Family Kraemeriidae 459sandfishes or sand gobies Marine rarely brackish or freshwater Indo Pacific to Hawaii

Pandaka Pygmaea Fish

Body elongate tongue bilobed at tip lower jaw protruding forward with enlarged chin eyes small body naked dorsal and anal fins free of caudal dorsal fin usually single with 4-6 feeble spines and usually 13-18 soft rays pelvics with one spine and five soft rays, usually separate five branchiostegal rays. These fishes generally inhabit sandy shallow waters. Many species burrow into the sand with only the head protruding. Maximum length about 6 cm. Two genera, the monotypic Gobitrichinotus with...

Family Champsodontidae 433gapers Marine Indo Pacific

Champsodontidae

Pelvic fins elongate, in front of pectorals pectoral fins small, base oblique spinous dorsal short, with five spines, soft dorsal, with 17-20 rays anal fin with one spine and 17-20 soft rays. There is no evidence that Champsodon is related to chiasmodontids or to other trachinoids, and Johnson 1993 and Mooi and Johnson 1997 noted that it may be related to the scorpaeniforms. Eocene fossils of Eochampsodon are known from the Northern Caucasus Bannikov, 2004c . One genus, Champsodon, with about...

Distribution And Biogeography

Biogeographic Distribution Fishes

Fishes occur in lakes, streams, estuaries, and oceans throughout the world. In most species of fishes, all individuals live entirely either in fresh or in marine waters. Over 225 species are diadromous, regularly living part of their lives in lakes and rivers and part in the oceans. Among these, most are anadromous, spawning in freshwater but spending much of their time in the sea. A few are catadromous, spawning in the oceans but returning to freshwater. Classification of some species as...

Importance To People

Fishes, like many other forms of life, are of immense value to humans. They have long been a staple item in the diet of many peoples, leading to the downfall of many species. Today they form an important element in the economy of many nations while giving incalculable recreational and psychological value to the naturalist, sports enthusiast, and home aquarist. Some fishes are dangerous e.g., poisonous, stinging, shocking, or biting and are of immense concern in some parts of the world. Fishes...

Family Hexagrammidae 316greenlings Marine North Pacific

Hexagrammidae

Head with cirri but without ridges or spines lateral lines one or five scales cycloid or ctenoid one dorsal fin but with a notch with 16-28 spines and 11-30 soft rays pelvic fin with one spine and five soft rays well-developed anterior nostril on each side, posterior nostril if present reduced to a small pore anal fin with 0-3 spines followed by soft rays six or seven branchioste-gal rays swim bladder absent vertebrae 36-63. Maximum length up to 1.5 m, attained in Ophiodon elongatus most other...

Family Trichiuridae 474cutlassfishes Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Scombridae

Body very elongate and strongly compressed protruding lower jaw teeth very long maxilla concealed by preorbitals fanglike teeth usually present single nostril on each side gill cover splintered dorsal fin extremely long based, with spines and soft rays spinous portion usually shorter than soft rayed portion, notch between two portions in some species anal fin with two spines and 56-121 soft rays caudal fin small or absent pectoral fin low on body pelvic fin reduced with a scalelike spine and...

Family Akysidae 136stream catfishes Freshwater southeastern Asia

Dorsal fin with a strong spine and a short base, usually four or five soft rays. Four genera given below with at least 42 species. The two subfamilies were ranked as families in Nelson 1994 . The family is sister to the clade of Sisoridae, Erethistidae, and Aspredinidae de Pinna, 1996b, 1998 . Subfamily Akysinae. Body with unculiferous tubercles arranged in longitudinal rows, a median middorsal row and usually four lateral rows dorsal fin with usually five soft rays adipose fin present and...

Family Chiasmodontidae 432swallowers Marine oceanic

Chiasmodontidae

Premaxilla and maxilla long and slender, firmly united posteriorly anterior tip of premaxilla expanded dorsally and diverging laterally highly distensible mouth and stomach. Placed in the Percoidei in Gosline 1971 . Four genera, Chiasmodon, Dysalotus, Kali synonym Gargaropteron , and Pseudoscopelus, with about 15 species e.g., Johnson and Cohen, 1974 McEachran and Sutton, 2003 . The last genus bears photophores.

Family Lampridae Lamprididae 202opahs Marine pelagic Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Fish Long Dorsal And Anal Fins

Body oval-shaped and compressed lateral line arched high in front dorsal and anal fins long dorsal with 48-56 rays and anal with 33-42 rays pelvic fin rays 12-17 minute cycloid scales vertebrae 43-46. Its food consists primarily of squids, octopuses, and crustaceans. Maximum length up to 1.8 m. The orthography of the family has been changed from Lamprididae to Lampridae, and some comment is required. There is a desire to have stability in the orthography of family names, while following...

Family Scombrolabracidae 471longfin escolars Marine deepwater Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Scombroidei

Premaxillae protractile preopercle and opercle serrated swim bladder with thin, elastic walls and, in adult, with bubblelike evaginations fitting into vertebral bullae 30 vertebrae, fifth through twelfth of adults with expanded para-pophyses, called the bullae, that bulge dorsolaterally and with ventral opening. Maximum length about 30 cm. As noted in Nelson 1994 , C. E. Bond and Uyeno 1981 , because of the mixed percoid and scombroid characteristics of the one species in general appearance it...

Family Holocentridae 282squirrelfishes Tropical marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Order Zeiformes Fishes

Pelvic fin with one spine and 5-8 usually seven soft rays long dorsal fin with spiny portion 10-13 spines and soft-rayed portion 11-17 rays divided by a notch anal fin with four spines and 7-16 soft rays caudal fin forked, with 18 or 19 principal rays scales large and ctenoid extremely rough eyes large opercle with spiny edge vertebrae 26 or 27 color usually reddish. Squirrelfishes are mostly nocturnal, usually hiding in crevices or beneath ledges of reefs in the daytime along with...

Family Pholidichthyidae 444convict blenny Marine southwesternmost Philippines to Solomon Islands

Body eel shaped one nostril on each side scales absent pelvics below or slightly in front of pectoral base, with one thin spine and two or three soft rays, rarely absent caudal fin rounded and joined with dorsal and anal fins dorsal fin with 66 98 soft rays anal fin with 49 81 soft rays pectoral fin with 15 rays lower pharyngeals fused into a single bone septal bone present in interorbital area larvae with four adhesive attachment glands between the eyes vertebrae 71-101. Placed in the...

Family Albulidae 71bonefishes Marine tropical seas

Maximum length about 105 cm, attained in Albula vulpes. Subfamily Albulinae. Most tropical seas rarely brackish and freshwater . Dorsal fin base short, 16-21 rays last ray of dorsal fin prolonged into a filament in Albula nemoptera branchiostegal rays 10-16 gill rakers 15-17 lateral line scales 66-84 vertebrae 69-80 small median gular plate maxilla and basihyal toothless crushing dentition on parasphenoid. One genus, Albula, and at least three species e.g., Smith, 2003 see Nelson et al., 2004...

Family Indostomidae 292armored sticklebacks Freshwater parts of Southeast Asia

Body slender and covered with bony scutes upper jaw not protrusible oper-cle with five to seven spines dorsal and anal fins each with six rays, usually five isolated spines preceding the dorsal fin three pectoral radials 22-24 pectoral fin rays pelvic fin with four soft rays, no spine gill filaments lobate subopercle minute and interopercle present parietals absent six bran-chiostegal rays no ribs usually 21 vertebrae swim bladder physoclistic. Maximum known length about 3.3 cm SL. The...

Family Nettastomatidae 87duckbill eels Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Head and snout elongate and narrow mouth enlarged tail greatly attenuated pectoral fin usually absent in adults present only in Hoplunnis vertebrae usually 190-280. Maximum length about 1 m. This family of tropical and warm temperate waters is poorly known it is thought to be most closely related to the Uroconger line of congrids. Six genera, Facciolella, Hoplunnis, Nettastoma,, Nettenchelys, Saurenchelys, and Venefica, with about 38 species e.g., D. G. Smith in Bohlke, 1989 568-612...

Family Himantolophidae 237footballfishes Marine Atlantic Indian and Pacific

Himantolophidae

Both sexes lack the parietals throughout life present in other ceratioids except lost in adult females of Rhynchactis triradiate pelvic bone six bran-chiostegal rays no epurals bony plates, each with a median spine, over body dorsal fin with five or six rays and anal fin with four rays caudal fin with nine rays pectoral fin rays 14-18 vertebrae about 19. Females differ from other ceratioids in having a blunt and short snout papillae on snout and chin. Maximum length 46 cm maximum length of...

Family Gasteropelecidae 118freshwater hatchetfishes Freshwater Panama and South America absent in Chile

Strongly compressed head and body with protruding bony and muscular breast region lateral line extremely short, extending to tail, or curved downward to approach origin of anal fin dorsal fin rays 10-17 anal fin rays 22-44 pelvic fins and associated bones minute four or five branchiostegal rays adipose fin present in larger species or absent in smaller species frontal bone bearing a strong longitudinal ridge posttemporal and supracleithrum fused into a single bone cleithra of each side fused no...

Family Schilbeidae Schilbidae 157schilbeid catfishes Freshwater Africa and southern Asia

Brachyplatystoma Filamentosum

Dorsal fin usually present with short base and a spine, absent in Ailia and Parailia adipose fin usually present anal fin base very long, not confluent with caudal, 24-90 rays usually four pairs of barbels. The pelvic fin is occasionally absent in species of several genera. Members of this family tend to swim in open water. It is interesting here to note that, as with some other family names, there is disagreement on the correct spelling. Rules concerning determining the correct formation of...

Superclass Gnathostomata Jawed Vertebrates

Jaws present, derived from modified gill arches endochondral bone present see Smith and Hall, 1990 paired limbs usually present three semicircular canals and two or more maculae gills covered with ectoderm and directed externally gill arches not fused with neurocranium, internal to gill lamellae gills opening to surface in fishes through slits opercular opening, when present, may be porelike myelinized nerve fibers. There are many characters that carry over in the transition from jawless fishes...

Class Actinopterygiithe rayfinned fishes

Cladogram Lutjanus

Cladogram showing the relationships of the extant actinopterygians as presented here. The Clupeomorpha and Ostariophysi compose the subdivision Ostarioclupeomorpha Otocephala , sister to the Euteleostei. See text for the many fossil clades omitted. The class Actinopterygii, one of the major vertebrate taxa, is not diagnosed by strong derived character sets, but is nevertheless thought to be mono-phyletic. The earliest fossil remains are of scales of the Late Silurian Andreolepis, Ligulalepis,...

Family Trichomycteridae Pygidiidae 129pencil catfishes or parasitic catfishes

Freshwater Costa Rica, Panama, and throughout South America. Body naked and elongate chin mental barbels usually absent, nasal barbel usually present, usually two pairs of maxillary barbels usually no adipose fin opercle usually with spines. Pelvic fins have been lost in at least three lineages Eremophilus, Glanapteryginae, and Miuroglanis. The common name parasitic catfishes is derived from the habits found in species of two subfamilies. Members of the Vandelliinae are hematophagous and pierce...