Subdivision Euteleostei

This taxon contains all the remaining teleost fishes. There is less than desirable convincing evidence that it is monophyletic, although, as noted by Johnson and Patterson (1996), monophyly is supported by the pattern of supraneural development and presence of a stegural and caudal median cartilages in the caudal skeleton.

Formerly, in Nelson (1994), the Ostariophysi was recognized here at the start of the Euteleostei as suggested by Rosen (1973a) and subsequently by others. However, the Ostariophysi is probably the sister group of the Clupeiformes and it is now placed above in the subdivision Ostarioclupeomorpha (= Otocephala). A critique of problems in euteleostean phylogeny may be found in Johnson and Patterson (1996). Much more work remains to be done before a sound classification of euteleosts can be given.

Twenty-eight orders, 346 families, 2,935 genera, and 17,419 species.

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