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Synodontidae
LIZARDFISHES
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Synodus evermanni
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Synodus evermanni
Synodus lacertinus
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Synodus lacertinus

Synodus lacertinus
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Synodus lacertinus
Synodus scituliceps
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Synodus scituliceps

Synodus sechurae
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Synodus sechurae
Synodontidae
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Synodontidae
español

Overview
Main identification features
  • body cylindridal;lizard head
  • 1st dorsal fin central
  • 2nd dorsal fin = skin flap
  • mouth large, many slender teeth
  • c: forked
FAMILY SYNODONTIDAE

LIZARDFISHES

Lizardfishes are characterized by a slender body; reptile-like head; large mouth with numerous slender, sharp teeth; no fin spines; a single dorsal fin, a small adipose (skin flap) fin near the tail base; and relatively large pelvic fins with 8-9 rays. They are relatively sedentary, soft bottom dwellers, although some Indo-West Pacific species inhabit coral reefs. They sometimes bury themselves in the substratum with only the eyes showing. This habit no doubt enables them to snare unsuspecting fish, the main component of the diet. When prey is sighted they literally rocket off the bottom with amazing speed, and once a small fish is seized it has little chance of escape.

The family contains five genera with about 40 species, most ocurring in the tropical Indo-Pacific. In our area only five species in one genus are known, all endemic.


References
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  • Gilbert, C.H., 1890., A preliminary report on the fishes collected by the steamer "Albatross" on the Pacific coast of North America during the year 1889, with descriptions of twelve new genera and ninety-two new species., Proc. U.S. Nat. Mus., 13:49-126.
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Acknowledgements

I thank Ashley MacDonald and John Pickering, University of Georgia, for technical support in building this page.


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