Poacher (fish)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Poachers
Aspidophoroides monopterygius.jpg
Alligatorfish (Aspidophoroides monopterygius)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Scorpaeniformes
Suborder: Cottoidei
Family: Agonidae
Swainson, 1839
Subfamilies & Genera[1]

Subfamily Agoninae
Agonopsis
Agonus
Freemanichthys
Leptagonus
Podothecus
Sarritor
Subfamily Anoplagoninae
Anoplagonus
Aspidophoroides
Ulcina
Subfamily Bathyagoninae
Bathyagonus
Odontopyxis
Xeneretmus
Subfamily Bothragoninae
Bothragonus
Subfamily Brachyopsinae
Brachyopsis
Chesnonia
Occella
Pallasina
Stellerina
Tilesina
Subfamily Hypsagoninae
Agonomalus
Hypsagonus
Percis

The poachers are a family (Agonidae) of small, bottom-dwelling, cold-water marine fish. They are also known as alligatorfishes, starsnouts, hooknoses, and rockheads. Poachers are notable for having elongated bodies covered by scales modified into bony plates, and for using their large pectoral fins to move in short bursts. The family includes about 47 species in some 20 genera, some of which are quite widespread.

The pelvic fins are nearly vestigial, typically consisting of one small spine and a few rays. The swim bladder is not present.

At 42 centimetres (17 in) in length, the dragon poacher Percis japonica is the largest member of the family, while Bothragonus occidentalis is 7 cm (2.8 in) long as an adult; most are in the 20-30 cm range.

Poachers generally feed on small crustaceans and marine worms found on the bottom. Some species camouflage themselves with hydras, sponges, or seaweed. They live at to 1,280 m (4,200 ft) deep, with only a few species preferring shallower, coastal waters. All but one species are restricted to the Northern Hemisphere.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Froese, Rainer, and Daniel Pauly, eds. (2012). "Agonidae" in FishBase. December 2012 version.
  2. ^ Eschmeyer, William M. (1998). Paxton, J.R. & Eschmeyer, W.N., ed. Encyclopedia of Fishes. San Diego: Academic Press. p. 179. ISBN 0-12-547665-5.