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Robert Williford

on 28 April 2014

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Transcript of Fishes

Born to Swim
Strong muscles attached to a backbone allow fish to swim vigorously after prey.

Fins -
fanlike structures that help fish move, steer, stop, and balance.

Scales -
protect the body and reduce fiction as they swim through water.
Fish Characteristics
Fish live in both fresh and salt water. They have been around for about 500 million years and they make up more species than all the other vertebrates combined. Fish are all consumers. Some are predators of other organisms, some are herbivores. Since they all actively search for food they need a strong body, well-developed senses, and a brain.
Examples: angelfish, surgeon fish, wolf eel, sea horse, and catfish.
Fishes have well developed vision, hearing, and sense of smell. They also have a
lateral line system.
Lateral line system -
a row, or rows, of tiny sense organs along each side of the body that extend onto the head. They detect water vibrations, like those caused by another fish swimming.
Types of Fishes
Jawless Fishes
Bony Fishes
This is the common fish that we all think about. They make up 95% of all fishes. This is the only group that has a skeleton made of bone. They have a
swim bladder,
which is an organ filled with gas that gives the fish buoyancy. Most bony fish are ray-finned fish which means they have paired fins supported by thin rays of bone.
In this section we will discuss fishes and their defining characteristics as well as the different types of fish.
Underwater Breathing
Gills -
organs that remove oxygen from the water. Water passes through the thin membrane of the gills where it comes in contact with the blood. The oxygen in the water connects with blood cells and is carried away to the rest of the body.
They have no jaws. They have survived for half a billion years. There are about sixty species. They include lampreys and hagfish. They are eel-like. They have smooth slimy skin, a round jawless mouth, skeletons made of cartilage, a skull, brain, and eyes.
Cartilaginous Fishes
Sharks, skates, and rays. These have soft cartilage skeletons but fully functional jaws. As predators they have keen senses of sight, smell, and a lateral line system.
The other group is lobe-finned fishes and lungfishes. This is a small group of fish but they have primitive lungs. Scientists think amphibians evolved from this type of fish.
Full transcript