Other Free Encyclopedias » Animal Life Resource » Fish and Other Cold-Blooded Vertebrates » Whalefishes and Relatives: Stephanoberyciformes - Physical Characteristics, Hairyfish (mirapinna Esau): Species Account - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, BEHAVIOR AND REPRODUCTION, WHALEFISHES AND THEIR RELATIVES AND PEOPLE, CONSERVATION STATUS

Whalefishes and Relatives: Stephanoberyciformes - Physical Characteristics

fishes spines usually scales

Most whalefishes and their relatives have a large head with bony ridges that give the fish a highly armored look. These fishes are rarely longer than 10 inches (25 centimeters) and usually are shorter than 5 inches (12 centimeters). The colors usually are drab brown or grayish black, but some fishes are reddish. Many whalefishes and their relatives look velvety because they have small outgrowths on the skin or because they have many spines on their scales. Some fishes in this group lack scales. Others have large, smooth scales. Numerous pores are usually visible on the head and lateral line. The lateral (LAT-uhr-uhl) line is a series of pores and tiny tubes along each side of a fish's body and is used for sensing vibrations. Some species have glowing tissues. All fishes in this group have a single dorsal (DOOR-suhl) fin with very few spines or no spines. The pelvic fins can be well developed, small, absent, or even winglike. The dorsal fin is the one along the midline of the back. The pelvic fins are the rear pair, corresponding to the rear legs of four-footed animals. The tail fin may have spines.

Whalefishes and Relatives: Stephanoberyciformes - Hairyfish (mirapinna Esau): Species Account [next]

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