University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science
DAMSL - Digital Atlas Of Marine Species & Locations
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Seahorse Information

Seahorses are a type of fish belonging to the genus Hippocampus.  In ancient Greek, the name translates to “horse/sea monster.”  There are believed to be at least 54 different species of seahorses.  However, due to the seahorse’s ability to change its color patterns and shape to camouflage itself, there has been a lot of difficulty…

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Nudibranch Information

Nudibranchs are a type of invertebrate species belonging to the Gastropoda class.  They are carnivorous bottom-dwellers and shell-less mollusks belonging to the same family as sea slugs.  Nudibranchs are primarily a saltwater species that can be found in all oceans from the intertidal zone to the deep ocean.  They do seem to prefer shallow tropical…

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Tang Information

Tangs belong to the family Acanthuridae.  A purely saltwater fish at least 50 million years old, the name is interchangeable at times with surgeonfish and doctorfish species.  Fish labeled as tangs appear to more often have a sharper, pointier nose than a fish labeled as a surgeonfish.  All tang species are laterally compressed with a…

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Surgeonfish Information

Surgeonfish belong to the family Acanthuridae.  There are at least 75 different species of surgeonfish, some of which are referred to as tang, doctorfish or unicornfish.  They have been around for more than 50 million years.  Surgeonfish only inhabit marine waters, but can be found in all tropical and subtropical seas with the exception of…

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Triggerfish Information

Triggerfish belong to the family Balistidae.  Consisting of at least 40 different species, some of these carnivorous fish can grow up to 3.3 feet in length.  They’re found only in tropical and subtropical oceans, as opposed to freshwater.  The largest numbers are found in the Indo-Pacific, and their preferred habit is shallow waters along coral…

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Hawkfish Information

Hawkfish belong to the family Cirrhitidae.  There are at least 33 different species of hawkfish, all of which live solely in marine waters.  They live in tropical waters of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Ocean.  Most species reside in the Indo-Pacific, while at least two species are recorded to have originated from the eastern and…

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Bream Information

There are a variety of fish referred to as bream fish, but not all of them are as closely related to each other as most species.  Therefore, it is difficult to give a specific class, order or family that bream fall into.  This also means there are both freshwater and marine species.  Sunfish, bluegill and…

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Lionfish Information

Lionfish belong to the Pterois genus.  Other common names for lionfish include fire fish, zebrafish, and turkey fish, and there are currently 8 recognized species of lionfish from the Pacific region.  Strictly a marine species, lionfish are native to the Indo-Pacific, but they are now found in the Atlantic where they are considered an invasive…

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Cuttlefish Information

Cuttlefish are marine cephalopods belonging to the order Sephioidea.  There are at least 120 different species of cuttlefish, and the modern cuttlefish first appeared somewhere around 21 million years ago.  They get their name from their thick internal calcified shell known as a cuttlebone.  This cuttlebone assists with buoyancy by filling and emptying its various…

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Barracuda Information

Barracuda fish belong to the Sphyraenidae family.  Consisting of more than 20 different species, Barracuda’s are predatory fish with long slim bodies, small scales, two separated dorsal fins, a jutting lower jaw and a large mouth with razor sharp teeth.  Their body is tapered at the ends and thicker in the middle.  Most species have…

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