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Belonidae
NEEDLEFISHES
Houndfishes

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Strongylura exilis
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Strongylura exilis
Strongylura scapularis
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Strongylura scapularis

Strongylura
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Strongylura
Strongylura exilis
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Strongylura exilis

Strongylura scapularis
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Strongylura scapularis
Tylosurus
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Tylosurus

Tylosurus imperialis melanotus
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Tylosurus imperialis melanotus
Tylosurus crocodilus fodiator
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Tylosurus crocodilus fodiator

Ablennes
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Ablennes
Ablennes hians
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Ablennes hians

Platybelone
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Platybelone
Platybelone argalus pterura
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Platybelone argalus pterura

Strongylura fluviatilis
© Copyright Photographer/SFTEP, 2002 · 0
Strongylura fluviatilis
Tylosurus crocodilus fodiator
© Copyright Photographer/SFTEP, 2002 · 0
Tylosurus crocodilus fodiator

Belonidae
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Belonidae
español

Overview
Main identification features
  • long, slender
  • dorsal and anal finsposterior
  • very long jaws, many pointed teeth
  • small scales
FAMILY BELONIDAE

NEEDLEFISHES, HOUNDFISHES

Needlefishes have very slender bodies and extremely elongate jaws with numerous needle-like teeth. The fins lack spines; the dorsal and anal fins are at the rear of the body, while the pelvics occur near the end of the abdomen and contain six rays. The lateral line is low on the body, and the scales are small. Another characteristic feature is the green coloured bones.

These fishes live at the surface and are protectively coloured for this mode of life: green or blue on the back and silvery white on the sides and ventrally. When frightened (for example, by a light at night), they may leap from the water and skip across the surface. They have been known to injure people who lie in their path at this time, and fatalities have resulted. Their diet consists mainly on small pelagic fishes. Needlefishes are good eating, although bony. Their eggs are large and have adhesive filaments with which they attach themselves to floating objects. The family is distributed worldwide in tropical and temperate seas; there are 10 genera and 32 species; eight species in four genera occur in our region.


References
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Acknowledgements

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