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The beard fishes are small, deep-sea marine ray-finned fishes. They are named as so because of their pair of long hyoid barbells. Hyoid is a horse-shoe shaped bone situated in the anterior midline of the neck between the chin and the thyroid cartilage. These fishes are of less economic importance.
Beardfishes looks like the description given below.
Length : These species can grow upto 20 inches.
Color : Their head and body is bluish gray in color. Their belly is silvery colored.
Weight : These fishes weighs 1-2kgs.
Fins : Their fins are supported by horny or bony spines and as they possess lepitrochia, that is why they are termed as ray-finned fishes. These fin rays stay attached directly to the basal skeletal elements, the radials. They have five spines and 34-27 soft rays.
Shape : They usually have a circular body and are found down at about 800 meters depth.
Breadfishes are found in tropical and sub-tropical waters of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Ocean. They live on both side of the Atlantic Ocean.
These species prefer tropical and sub-tropical waters because they are deep water fish. These fishes are also seen in deep sea coral. Beardfishes like both gravel and sandy bottoms.
Not much is known about their behavioural pattern. But all that is known is that they are peaceful in nature and are not aggressive.
Beardfish feeds on crustaceans, small fishes and squid. They love eating small fishes like finfish, bony fish etc.
Aquatic animals that are bigger in size than the beardfish preys on this fish for their diet.
This species boasts few adaptive features for its survival.
- Their special fins help them swim fast.
- Their large stomach allows them grab small fishes when feel hungry.
- They prefer living in the lower level of water because of their finned rays.
Their mating season is evident between April and June.
Not much is known of their reproduction. Their eggs have not been found. But from their growing population, it can be said that they reproduce in large numbers.
Breadfish relatively have long life span.
Sum up some of the most interesting facts about this fish.
- This species is known from seamounts and knolls.
- They are found at depths ranging from 100-770m.
- Breadfish are locally abundant.
- Stout breadfish are marketed fresh and frozen.
Here are a few images of breadfish.