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The Class Actinopterygii is further organized into finer groupings including:


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Acipenseriformes () are an order of primitive ray-finned fishes that includes the sturgeons and paddlefishes, as well as some extinct families. [more]


Amiiformes is an order of fish, of which only one species, the Bowfin, Amia calva, is still extant. [more]


Atheriniformes, also known as the silversides, is an order of ray-finned fish that includes the Old World silversides and several less-familiar families, including the unusual Phallostethidae. They are found worldwide in tropical and temperate marine and freshwater environments. [more]


Aulopiformes is an order of marine ray-finned fish consisting of some 15 extant and several prehistoric families with about 45 genera and over 230 species. The common names grinners, lizardfishes and allies or aulopiforms are sometimes used for this group. The scientific name means "Aulopus-shaped", from (the type genus) + the standard fish order suffix "-formes". It ultimately derives from Ancient Greek aul?s (a????, "flute" or "pipe") + Latin forma ("external form"), the former in reference to the elongated shape of many Aulopiformes. [more]


The Beloniformes are an order of five families of freshwater and marine ray-finned fish: the Adrianichthyidae (ricefish and medakas); Belonidae (needlefish); Exocoetidae (flyingfishes); Hemiramphidae (halfbeaks); and the Scomberesocidae (sauries). With the exception of the Adrianichthyidae, these are streamlined, medium-sized fishes that live close to the surface of the water feeding on algae, plankton, or smaller animals including other fishes. Most are marine, though a few needlefish and halfbeaks inhabit brackish and fresh waters. [more]


Beryciformes is an order of ray-finned fishes. This is a very poorly understood group of 16 families[], 57 genera, and about 219 species. Some people[who?] believe that it is probably an artificial assemblage of unrelated taxa that are thrown together for convenience only; there are no convincing characteristics that tie all members together. Most species live in deep marine waters, and avoid bright light, although they may come closer to the surface at night. [more]


The Characiformes are an order of ray-finned fish, comprising the characins and their allies. Grouped in 18 recognized families, there are a few thousand different species, including the well-known piranha and tetras. [more]


Clupeiformes is the order of ray-finned fish that includes the herring family, Clupeidae, and the anchovy family, Engraulidae. The group includes many of the most important food fish. [more]


The Cypriniformes are an order of ray-finned fish, including the carps, minnows, loaches and relatives. This order contains 5-6 families, over 320 genera, and more than 3,250 species, with new species being described every few months or so, and new genera being recognized regularly. They are most diverse in southeastern Asia, but are entirely absent from Australia and South America. [more]




Gadiformes is an order of ray-finned fish, also called the Anacanthini, that includes the cod and its allies. Many major food fish are in this order. They are found in marine waters throughout the world, and there are also a small number of freshwater species. [more]


Gasterosteiformes is an order of ray-finned fishes that includes the sticklebacks and relatives. [more]






Lampriformes is an order of ray-finned fish. They are collectively called "lamprids" (which is more properly used for the Lampridae) or lampriforms, and unite such open-ocean and partially deep-sea Teleostei as the crestfishes, oarfish, opahs and ribbonfishes. A synonym for this order is Allotriognathi, while an often-seen but apparently incorrect spelling variant is Lampridiformes. They contain 7 extant families which are generally small but highly distinct, and a mere 12 lampriforms genera with some 20 species altogether are recognized. [more]


Ophidiiformes is an order of ray-finned fish that includes the cusk eels (family Ophidiidae), pearlfishes (family Carapidae), brotulas (family Bythitidae), and others. [more]


Osmeriformes is an order of ray-finned fish that includes the true or freshwater smelts and allies, such as the galaxiids and noodlefishes; they are also collectively called osmeriforms. They belong to the teleost superorder Protacanthopterygii, which also includes pike and salmon, among others. The order's name means "smelt-shaped", from Osmerus (the type genus) + the standard fish order suffix "-formes". It ultimately derives from Ancient Greek osm? (?s??, "pungent smell") + Latin forma ("external form"), the former in reference to the characteristic aroma of the flesh of Osmerus. [more]


Osteoglossiformes (Gk. "bony tongues") is a relatively primitive order of ray-finned fish that contains two sub-orders, the Osteoglossoidei and the Notopteroidei. All of the living species inhabit freshwater. They are found in South America, Africa, Australia and southern Asia, having first evolved in Gondwana before that continent broke up. [more]




Perciformes, also called the Percomorphi or Acanthopteri, is one of the largest orders of vertebrates, containing about 40% of all bony fish. Perciformes means "perch-like". They belong to the class of ray-finned fish, and comprise over 7,000 species found in almost all aquatic environments. It contains about 155 families, which is the most of any order within the vertebrates. They are also the most variably sized order of vertebrates, ranging from the 7 millimeters (0.28 in) Schindleria brevipinguis to the 5 meters (16 ft) Makaira species. They first appeared and diversified in the Late Cretaceous. Among well-known members of this group are cichlids, sunfish/bluegill, damselfish, bass, and, of course, perch. [more]


The flatfish are an order (Pleuronectiformes) of ray-finned demersal fish, also called the Heterosomata, sometimes classified as a suborder of Perciformes. In many species, both eyes lie on one side of the head, one or the other migrating through and around the head during development. Some species face their left side upward, some face their right side upward, and others face either side upward. [more]


Scorpaeniformes is an order of ray-finned fish, but it has also been called the Scleroparei. [more]


Catfishes (order Siluriformes) are a diverse group of ray-finned fish. Named for their prominent barbels, which resemble a cat's whiskers, catfish range in size and behavior from the heaviest and longest, the Mekong giant catfish from Southeast Asia and the second longest, the wels catfish of Eurasia, to detritivores (species that eat dead material on the bottom), and even to a tiny parasitic species commonly called the candiru, Vandellia cirrhosa. There are armour-plated types and also naked types, neither having scales. Despite their name, not all catfish have prominent barbels; members of the Siluriformes order are defined by features of the skull and swimbladder. Catfish are of considerable commercial importance; many of the larger species are farmed or fished for food. Many of the smaller species, particularly the genus Corydoras, are important in the aquarium hobby. Catfish are nocturnal. [more]


Stomiiformes is an order of deep-sea ray-finned fishes of very diverse morphology. It includes for example dragonfishes, lightfishes, loosejaws, marine hatchetfishes and viperfishes. The order contains 4 families (5 according to some authors) with more than 50 genera and almost 400 species. As usual for deep-sea fishes, there are few common names for species of the order, but the Stomiiformes as a whole are often called dragonfishes and allies or simply stomiiforms. [more]


The Tetraodontiformes are an order of highly derived ray-finned fish, also called the Plectognathi. Sometimes these are classified as a suborder of the Perciformes. The Tetraodontiformes are represented by ten families and approximately 360 species overall; most are marine and dwell in and around tropical coral reefs, but a handful of species are found in freshwater streams and estuaries. They have no close relatives, and descend from a line of coral-dwelling species that emerged around 40 million years ago. [more]


The Zeiformes are a small order of marine ray-finned fishes most notable for the dories, a group of common food fish. The order consists of about 40 species in seven families, mostly deep-sea types. [more]

At least 89 species and subspecies belong to the Order Zeiformes.

More info about the Order Zeiformes may be found here.


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Last Revised: October 03, 2013
2013/10/03 15:58:27