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Fish Families

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  1. Fish Families Family Identification

  2. Acipenseridae / Sturgeon Family:

  3. Acipenseridae / Sturgeon Family: • Rows of bony scales • Ventral Mouth, with barbels • Lake Sturgeon in the Great Lakes • Flesh is tasty! 

  4. Amiidae / Bowfin Family: Amia calva

  5. Amiidae / Bowfin Family: • Long dorsal fin across most of the back • Body covered with scales • Long bony plate under the lower jaw • Only one species exists “living fossil”

  6. Anguillidae / Freshwater Eel Family

  7. Anguillidae / Freshwater Eel Family • The American Eel is distinguished by its shape • Long dorsal, caudal and anal fins • Toothed jaws, and the single gill opening. • Lampreys have a similar shape and long dorsal fins but have no jaws (teeth are in a sucking disc) and there are 7 gill openings – Lamprey NOT included with this group • Found in N. Atlantic and Great Lakes Region

  8. Atherinidae / Silverside Family

  9. Antherinidae / Silverside Family • Brook silversides are known for leaping out of the water over and over again-especially on moonlit nights. • Brook silversides are small, almost see-through fish that grow to about 3” long

  10. Catostomidae / Sucker Family

  11. Catostomidae / Sucker Family • Single soft rayed dorsal fin • Toothless jaws, teeth in throat only • Cycloid scales • Fleshy, protruding lips

  12. Centrarchidae / Sunfish Family

  13. Centrarchidae / Sunfish Family

  14. Centrarchidae / Sunfish Family • Deep-bodied and compressed laterally • Fins often have both soft rays and stiff spines • Sunfish generally thrive in warm water • All sunfish are nest builders, and their saucer-shaped nests can be frequently observed along the shoreline of ponds, lakes and streams in late spring. • An active, nest-guarding male can often be observed swimming within the nest vicinity, guarding both eggs and newly-hatched young. A few days after hatching, the young emerge from the nest, at which time the guarding parent leaves them to care for themselves. • All sunfish are carnivorous.

  15. Cottidae – Sculpin Family

  16. Cottidae – Sculpin Family • Large head • Fanlike pectoral fins • No spines in anal fin. • This is a very large family with about 300 species. • Most species are found in Arctic or temperate waters and are bottom dwellers. • They typically occur in shallow or inter-tidal zones, though some species occur in deep ocean and others in fresh water.

  17. Cyprinidae – Minnow Family

  18. Cyprinidae – Minnow Family • No jaw teeth, ONE dorsal fin • 1-3 rows of pharyngeal teeth • Barbels sometimes present. • This huge family lives almost exclusively in freshwater, though some of its members stray into brackish water. • There are more than two thousand species in this family

  19. Esocidae – Pike Family

  20. Esocidae – Pike Family • Members of the pike family have a long, streamlined profile that is found among predators in many fish families throughout the world. • Their fins are soft rayed, lacking the stiff spines found in other familiar fishes, such as sunfish and yellow perch. • Median fins include the dorsal and anal fins, located opposite each other about three-quarters of the way back towards the tail. • The pelvic fins are located midway on the fish's belly. • The pectoral fins are positioned closer to the head.

  21. Esocidae – Pike Family • These ambush predators are known for their voracious appetites, feeding on prey fish • Because they are such aggressive predators, they are also popular fish for anglers to catch

  22. Esocidae – Pike Family

  23. Gasterosteidae / Stickleback Family:

  24. Gasterosteidae / Stickleback Family: • Sticklebacks are small fish • They have 2,3 or more strong spines on the back in front of the dorsal fin • (spines that they can erect or depress at will) • Some of them have bony plates in the scaleless skin, but others do not.

  25. Gasterosteidae / Stickleback Family: • Found in marine (salt), brackish (mixed) & freshwater habitats in the northern hemisphere • Spawning almost always takes place in freshwater • Eggs usually develop in a nest built & guarded by the male.

  26. Ictaluridae

  27. Ictaluridae / N. American Catfish Family: • Catfish do not have scales, and are aged by making cross sections of the pectoral spines to read growth rings. • The fin spines can be very toxic because of poisonous cell secretions on the spine but are not fatal to humans. • Wounds can be painful and extremely swollen for days although in most cases the wasp-like sensation fades after an hour and is gone in about 4-5 hours. • Madtoms are named for their hyperactive, darting and dashing behavior. • Bullhead catfishes are hardy and very tolerant of domestic pollution. • FYI:Larger catfishes, such as the Channel Catfish, are commercially important in the U.S.A. and are cultured in ponds. Catfish restaurant dinners are a specialty in the southern U.S.A. and catfish figure prominently in fish and chips. These fishes are also sought after by anglers, being strong fighters and good eating.

  28. MAD TOM

  29. Ictaluridae • All species construct nests and protect their young, although some smaller species take advantage of pollution by nesting in beer cans • The barbels and skin are taste and touch sensitive and used to detect food. • This is particularly useful in muddy water and at night. Many of these catfishes are nocturnal. "Taste" can also be used in breeding behavior and in schooling . Most catfish also have excellent hearing!

  30. Lepisosteidae

  31. Lepisosteidae / Gar Family: • Gars are found in freshwaters of North America sometimes in brackish water & rarely the sea. • Gars have elongate jaws ("gar" is Old English for spear) filled with needle-like teeth. • The ganoid scales are heavy, peg and groove hinged, non-overlapping, rhombic and plate-like, forming an effective armor. • Dorsal and anal fins are near the tail.

  32. Lepisosteidae