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

Seals are semi-aquatic mammals belonging to the Pinnipedia family.  With more than 33 different species, these carnivorous pinnipeds include walruses, eared seals such as sea lions and furred seals, and earless seals such as elephant seals.  While seals may differ in size and color, all seals have a streamlined body with four fins that are…

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Shark Information

Sharks are part of the Class Chondrichthyes.  They are a cartilaginous fish, so their skeleton is made up completely of a tissue lighter and more flexible than bone known as cartilage.  Currently, there are more than 500 known species.  Sharks are a prime example of evolutionary dominance, considering they have been around for at least…

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Parrotfish Information

Parrotfish belong to the family Scaridae. At least 80 species have been identified, and all of the world’s oceans are known to hold some species of parrotfish around tropical reefs. They can live up to 7 years and grow to be anywhere between 1 to 4 feet in length. They are protogynous hermaphrodites, which means…

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Snapper Information

Snappers belong to the order Perciformes in the Lutjanidae family. There are at least 17 different genera and 112 different species of snapper fish. Snappers are mainly a marine fish, rarely being found in estuaries. They will enter freshwater to feed though. More of a tropical and subtropical fish, many species are found in the…

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Grouper Information

All Groupers fall under the family Serranidae, and the order Perciformes. They’re categorized in either of two genera, Epinephelus or Mycteroperca. Groupers are often recognized for their large mouth and heavy body. Their colors are usually dull tones of greens and browns, but there are a few with some more boldly colored bright patterns. The…

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Frogfish Information

Frogfish are any members of the anglerfish family, Antennariidae, and the teleost order Lophiiformes.  There are at least 46 known species of Frogfish.  A rather complex design, this fish comes in a variety of color and color patterns.  Some distinguishing features include a large, anterodorsally directed mouth with more or less 2-4 rows of small,…

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Butterflyfish Information

Butterflyfish belong in the Actinopterygii Class like most fish, and the Family Chaetodontidae. The name Butterflyfish may reference the wide variety of colors and patterns they come in, as well as the occasional spot near the tail end of the fish resembling an eye. Like actual butterflies, this fake eye serves as a way to…

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Jellyfish Information

Jellyfish are a free-swimming marine invertebrate belonging to the scientific phylum Cnidaria.  The term comes from the Greek word for “sea nettle.”  Species that share this phylum include corals, sea anemones, and hydroids.  All Cnidarians contain stinging cells known as cnidocytes, which fire a structure known as a nematocyst.  This nematocyst contains a toxin that…

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Pufferfish Information

Pufferfish belong to the family Tetradontidae and the order Tetradonitformes.  There are at least 200 known species of Pufferfish.  Pufferfish and Blowfish are one and the same, but Pufferfish are not to be confused with the Porcupine Fish or Balloon Fish of the family Diodontidae.  Pufferfish contain a beak like formation of four teeth, and…

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Nurse Shark Information

Nurse Sharks, The Original Bottom Feeder Nurse sharks are commonly found in shallow, sub-tropical and tropical waters. Their range is from Rhode Island to Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico, the Indo-Pacific in Philippines and the Caribbean Sea. Rarely are they found north of Cape Hatteras. They frequently dwell on rocky and coral reefs, and…

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