Fish species numbers in the FishBase classification list


     The classification schema above genus level is limited in FishBase to classes, orders, families and subfamilies ranks (the latter not yet displayed). It has the advantage to keep it simple; it has the disadvantage to ignore some important clades in fish phylogeny like Chondrichthyes, Teleostei, Acanthomorpha, Percomorpha.

     In general, it follows Nelson's Fishes of the World (2006) with the noticeable exception of Elasmobranchii and Holocephali being elevated to class rank But at family level, FishBase may follow Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes that is updated more frequently to integrate new stable groupings.

     Number of taxa from Orders to Species are given for what they are, a useful tool for information and database management. The design of some analyses (so-called Biodiversity analyses) that uses these numbers must be carefully assessed before processing (see footnote for some critical points).

     Catalog of Fishes gives also number of species, including available names in the sense of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, which we don't have. Possible discrepancies between the species and genera numbers are explained in Bailly (2010). As Catalog of Fishes is updated ahead of FishBase, the numbers given there are in general more accurate.

     Wiley and Johnson published a new classification for Teleostei (2010). They propose to stabilize several hypotheses published recently or some (long) time ago by listing the known evidences (synapomorphies). FishBase will follow this new arrangement as soon as the ichthyological community endorses it, e.g., as published in a next version of Fishes of the World. In the meantime, to avoid confusion for non-specialists, we hold on the current one.

Note that the numbers of species given below does not take into account subspecies.

Total count of Genera: 5129
Total count of Species: 34175


Number of Valid
Kingdom Phylum
Class
#6
Order
#64
Family
#553
Orders Families Genera Species
Animalia
Chordata
Myxini 1 1 6 82
Myxiniformes 1 6 82
Myxinidae 6 82
Cephalaspidomorphi 1 3 10 47
Petromyzontiformes 3 10 47
Petromyzontidae 8 43
Geotriidae 1 1
Mordaciidae 1 3
Elasmobranchii 12 51 197 1183
Hexanchiformes 2 4 6
Hexanchidae 3 4
Chlamydoselachidae 1 2
Heterodontiformes 1 1 9
Heterodontidae 1 9
Orectolobiformes 7 13 45
Rhincodontidae 1 1
Parascylliidae 2 8
Brachaeluridae 1 2
Orectolobidae 3 12
Hemiscylliidae 2 17
Stegostomatidae 1 1
Ginglymostomatidae 3 4
Lamniformes 7 10 16
Odontaspididae 2 4
Mitsukurinidae 1 1
Pseudocarchariidae 1 1
Lamnidae 3 5
Megachasmidae 1 1
Cetorhinidae 1 1
Alopiidae 1 3
Carcharhiniformes 8 51 294
Scyliorhinidae 17 158
Proscylliidae 3 7
Pseudotriakidae 3 5
Leptochariidae 1 1
Triakidae 9 46
Hemigaleidae 4 8
Carcharhinidae 12 59
Sphyrnidae 2 10
Squaliformes 7 23 139
Dalatiidae 7 9
Etmopteridae 5 52
Somniosidae 5 17
Oxynotidae 1 5
Centrophoridae 2 18
Squalidae 2 36
Echinorhinidae 1 2
Pristiophoriformes 1 2 8
Pristiophoridae 2 8
Squatiniformes 1 1 25
Squatinidae 1 25
Torpediniformes 4 14 68
Narkidae 6 12
Narcinidae 5 31
Hypnidae 1 1
Torpedinidae 2 24
Rhinopristiformes 2 8 48
Rhinobatidae 6 41
Pristidae 2 7
Rajiformes 3 35 284
Rajidae 17 162
Arhynchobatidae 13 106
Anacanthobatidae 5 16
Myliobatiformes 8 35 241
Hexatrygonidae 1 1
Dasyatidae 19 102
Potamotrygonidae 4 35
Urotrygonidae 2 20
Gymnuridae 1 16
Plesiobatidae 1 1
Urolophidae 3 28
Myliobatidae 4 38
Holocephali 1 3 6 56
Chimaeriformes 3 6 56
Callorhinchidae 1 3
Chimaeridae 2 45
Rhinochimaeridae 3 8
Actinopterygii 46 491 4906 32799
Polypteriformes 1 2 14
Polypteridae 2 14
Acipenseriformes 2 6 27
Acipenseridae 4 25
Polyodontidae 2 2
Lepisosteiformes 1 2 7
Lepisosteidae 2 7
Amiiformes 1 1 1
Amiidae 1 1
Elopiformes 2 2 9
Elopidae 1 7
Megalopidae 1 2
Albuliformes 1 3 13
Albulidae 3 13
Notacanthiformes 2 7 28
Halosauridae 3 16
Notacanthidae 4 12
Anguilliformes 16 156 918
Protanguillidae 1 1
Synaphobranchidae 12 39
Heterenchelyidae 2 8
Myrocongridae 1 5
Muraenidae 16 202
Chlopsidae 8 25
Colocongridae 1 7
Derichthyidae 2 3
Ophichthidae 61 323
Muraenesocidae 6 15
Nettastomatidae 7 42
Congridae 30 195
Moringuidae 2 15
Nemichthyidae 3 9
Serrivomeridae 2 9
Anguillidae 2 20
Saccopharyngiformes 4 5 28
Cyematidae 2 2
Saccopharyngidae 1 10
Eurypharyngidae 1 1
Monognathidae 1 15
Osteoglossiformes 7 32 254
Hiodontidae 1 2
Pantodontidae 1 1
Osteoglossidae 2 6
Arapaimidae 2 5
Notopteridae 4 10
Mormyridae 21 229
Gymnarchidae 1 1
Clupeiformes 6 84 396
Denticipitidae 1 1
Clupeidae 54 196
Dussumieriidae 2 9
Engraulidae 17 150
Chirocentridae 1 2
Pristigasteridae 9 38
Gonorynchiformes 4 7 37
Chanidae 1 1
Gonorynchidae 1 5
Kneriidae 4 30
Phractolaemidae 1 1
Cypriniformes 12 486 4448
Gyrinocheilidae 1 3
Catostomidae 13 79
Botiidae 1 10
Vaillantellidae 1 3
Cobitidae 28 262
Barbuccidae 1 2
Serpenticobitidae 1 3
Balitoridae 34 202
Ellopostomatidae 1 2
Nemacheilidae 41 696
Psilorhynchidae 1 28
Cyprinidae 363 3158
Characiformes 23 285 2171
Citharinidae 3 8
Distichodontidae 16 102
Crenuchidae 12 93
Alestidae 18 119
Hepsetidae 1 6
Erythrinidae 3 18
Parodontidae 3 32
Cynodontidae 3 8
Serrasalmidae 16 98
Hemiodontidae 5 31
Anostomidae 15 158
Chilodontidae 2 8
Curimatidae 8 106
Prochilodontidae 3 21
Lebiasinidae 7 77
Ctenoluciidae 2 7
Chalceidae 1 5
Triportheidae 5 23
Gasteropelecidae 3 9
Bryconidae 4 49
Iguanodectidae 3 32
Acestrorhynchidae 7 26
Characidae 145 1135
Siluriformes 38 496 3798
Diplomystidae 2 7
Cetopsidae 5 42
Chacidae 1 4
Olyridae 1 7
Plotosidae 10 42
Horabagridae 2 7
Bagridae 20 232
Akysidae 5 57
Amblycipitidae 4 39
Sisoridae 18 220
Erethistidae 7 46
Pangasiidae 4 29
Siluridae 12 107
Aspredinidae 13 43
Auchenipteridae 22 120
Doradidae 33 96
Heptapteridae 24 214
Pimelodidae 32 113
Pseudopimelodidae 6 39
Clariidae 15 116
Heteropneustidae 1 5
Ariidae 30 153
Anchariidae 2 6
Austroglanididae 1 3
Cranoglanididae 1 5
Ictaluridae 7 51
Lacantuniidae 1 1
Amphiliidae 13 98
Malapteruridae 2 21
Mochokidae 9 221
Claroteidae 11 82
Schilbeidae 10 49
Nematogenyidae 1 1
Trichomycteridae 42 288
Callichthyidae 9 206
Loricariidae 118 955
Scoloplacidae 1 6
Astroblepidae 1 67
Gymnotiformes 5 35 239
Gymnotidae 2 41
Rhamphichthyidae 3 17
Hypopomidae 9 46
Sternopygidae 6 46
Apteronotidae 15 89
Esociformes 2 4 14
Esocidae 1 7
Umbridae 3 7
Osmeriformes 13 80 326
Argentinidae 2 27
Microstomatidae 3 20
Bathylagidae 8 22
Opisthoproctidae 9 21
Alepocephalidae 19 98
Platytroctidae 13 39
Leptochilichthyidae 1 3
Lepidogalaxiidae 1 1
Osmeridae 6 15
Plecoglossidae 1 1
Salangidae 7 20
Retropinnidae 3 6
Galaxiidae 7 53
Salmoniformes 1 11 226
Salmonidae 11 226
Stomiiformes 4 52 415
Gonostomatidae 8 31
Sternoptychidae 10 74
Phosichthyidae 7 24
Stomiidae 27 286
Ateleopodiformes 1 4 13
Ateleopodidae 4 13
Aulopiformes 16 45 267
Aulopidae 4 15
Chlorophthalmidae 2 17
Paraulopidae 1 14
Ipnopidae 5 30
Bathysauroididae 1 1
Scopelarchidae 4 18
Notosudidae 3 17
Giganturidae 1 2
Synodontidae 4 75
Bathysauridae 1 2
Paralepididae 12 58
Anotopteridae 1 3
Evermannellidae 3 8
Omosudidae 1 1
Alepisauridae 1 2
Pseudotrichonotidae 1 4
Myctophiformes 2 36 254
Neoscopelidae 3 6
Myctophidae 33 248
Lampriformes 7 12 23
Lampridae 1 2
Veliferidae 2 2
Lophotidae 2 4
Radiicephalidae 1 1
Trachipteridae 3 10
Regalecidae 2 3
Stylephoridae 1 1
Polymixiiformes 1 1 10
Polymixiidae 1 10
Percopsiformes 3 7 10
Percopsidae 1 2
Aphredoderidae 1 1
Amblyopsidae 5 7
Gadiformes 10 84 619
Muraenolepididae 2 9
Bregmacerotidae 1 14
Euclichthyidae 1 1
Macrouridae 35 406
Moridae 18 108
Melanonidae 1 2
Gadidae 13 23
Lotidae 6 22
Phycidae 2 11
Merlucciidae 5 23
Ophidiiformes 5 116 519
Ophidiidae 50 258
Carapidae 8 36
Bythitidae 50 198
Aphyonidae 6 24
Parabrotulidae 2 3
Batrachoidiformes 1 23 83
Batrachoididae 23 83
Lophiiformes 18 72 363
Lophiidae 4 28
Antennariidae 13 47
Tetrabrachiidae 2 2
Lophichthyidae 1 1
Brachionichthyidae 5 14
Chaunacidae 2 26
Ogcocephalidae 10 78
Caulophrynidae 2 5
Neoceratiidae 1 1
Melanocetidae 1 6
Himantolophidae 1 22
Diceratiidae 2 6
Oneirodidae 16 64
Thaumatichthyidae 2 8
Centrophrynidae 1 1
Ceratiidae 2 4
Gigantactinidae 2 23
Linophrynidae 5 27
Gobiesociformes 1 51 171
Gobiesocidae 51 171
Atheriniformes 10 51 360
Atherinidae 14 71
Bedotiidae 2 16
Melanotaeniidae 7 95
Pseudomugilidae 3 18
Telmatherinidae 5 18
Notocheiridae 1 1
Isonidae 1 5
Dentatherinidae 1 1
Phallostethidae 4 23
Atherinopsidae 13 112
Cyprinodontiformes 10 132 1322
Aplocheilidae 2 14
Nothobranchiidae 12 273
Rivulidae 38 424
Valenciidae 1 3
Fundulidae 3 44
Cyprinodontidae 10 137
Profundulidae 1 9
Goodeidae 18 51
Poeciliidae 44 349
Anablepidae 3 18
Beloniformes 6 34 272
Scomberesocidae 2 5
Belonidae 10 38
Hemiramphidae 8 61
Zenarchopteridae 5 63
Exocoetidae 7 68
Adrianichthyidae 2 37
Stephanoberyciformes 4 11 74
Stephanoberycidae 4 4
Hispidoberycidae 1 1
Melamphaidae 5 67
Gibberichthyidae 1 2
Beryciformes 7 30 163
Monocentridae 2 4
Trachichthyidae 8 48
Anomalopidae 6 9
Diretmidae 3 4
Anoplogastridae 1 2
Berycidae 2 10
Holocentridae 8 86
Cetomimiformes 3 18 33
Rondeletiidae 1 2
Barbourisiidae 1 1
Cetomimidae 16 30
Zeiformes 6 16 33
Cyttidae 1 3
Oreosomatidae 4 10
Parazenidae 3 4
Zeniontidae 3 7
Grammicolepididae 3 3
Zeidae 2 6
Gasterosteiformes 5 11 30
Hypoptychidae 2 2
Gasterosteidae 5 18
Aulorhynchidae 1 1
Indostomidae 1 3
Pegasidae 2 6
Syngnathiformes 5 65 327
Aulostomidae 1 3
Fistulariidae 1 4
Centriscidae 5 12
Solenostomidae 1 6
Syngnathidae 57 302
Synbranchiformes 3 13 121
Synbranchidae 4 25
Mastacembelidae 3 86
Chaudhuriidae 6 10
Scorpaeniformes 36 290 1653
Sebastidae 7 132
Setarchidae 3 7
Neosebastidae 2 18
Scorpaenidae 25 223
Apistidae 3 3
Tetrarogidae 17 41
Synanceiidae 9 36
Eschmeyeridae 1 1
Perryenidae 1 1
Aploactinidae 17 48
Pataecidae 3 3
Gnathanacanthidae 1 1
Congiopodidae 3 9
Dactylopteridae 2 7
Plectrogeniidae 1 2
Parabembridae 1 2
Bembridae 4 9
Triglidae 8 125
Peristediidae 6 45
Hoplichthyidae 1 13
Platycephalidae 18 80
Anoplopomatidae 2 2
Hexagrammidae 5 12
Normanichthyidae 1 1
Rhamphocottidae 1 1
Ereuniidae 2 3
Bathylutichthyidae 1 1
Cottidae 62 257
Cottocomephoridae 4 9
Comephoridae 1 2
Abyssocottidae 7 24
Hemitripteridae 3 8
Psychrolutidae 9 40
Agonidae 21 46
Cyclopteridae 6 27
Liparidae 32 414
Mugiliformes 1 27 78
Mugilidae 27 78
Perciformes 164 1762 11405
Centropomidae 1 12
Ambassidae 8 51
Percichthyidae 10 38
Perciliidae 1 2
Howellidae 3 9
Lateolabracidae 1 2
Latidae 3 13
Acropomatidae 10 37
Moronidae 2 6
Polyprionidae 2 4
Dinopercidae 2 2
Serranidae 75 555
Ostracoberycidae 1 3
Symphysanodontidae 2 13
Centrogenyidae 1 1
Pseudochromidae 24 152
Grammatidae 2 17
Callanthiidae 2 16
Plesiopidae 12 50
Opistognathidae 4 83
Terapontidae 16 59
Banjosidae 1 3
Kuhliidae 1 13
Elassomatidae 1 7
Centrarchidae 8 38
Percidae 11 239
Priacanthidae 4 19
Apogonidae 38 355
Epigonidae 7 45
Dinolestidae 1 1
Sillaginidae 5 34
Malacanthidae 5 45
Lactariidae 1 1
Scombropidae 1 3
Pomatomidae 1 1
Rachycentridae 1 1
Echeneidae 3 8
Carangidae 30 146
Nematistiidae 1 1
Coryphaenidae 1 2
Menidae 1 1
Leiognathidae 10 51
Bramidae 7 20
Caristiidae 4 19
Arripidae 1 4
Emmelichthyidae 3 17
Lutjanidae 17 113
Caesionidae 4 23
Lobotidae 1 2
Datnioididae 1 5
Hapalogenyidae 1 8
Gerreidae 8 53
Haemulidae 19 134
Sparidae 38 159
Lethrinidae 5 41
Nemipteridae 5 68
Sciaenidae 66 286
Polynemidae 8 42
Mullidae 6 87
Pempheridae 2 79
Glaucosomatidae 1 4
Leptobramidae 1 1
Bathyclupeidae 1 7
Toxotidae 1 7
Dichistiidae 1 2
Kyphosidae 11 36
Girellidae 2 20
Parascorpididae 1 1
Drepaneidae 1 3
Monodactylidae 2 6
Chaetodontidae 12 132
Pomacanthidae 8 91
Enoplosidae 1 1
Pentacerotidae 7 13
Polycentridae 2 3
Nandidae 3 9
Badidae 2 30
Pristolepididae 1 8
Oplegnathidae 1 7
Cirrhitidae 12 33
Chironemidae 1 6
Aplodactylidae 1 5
Cheilodactylidae 4 27
Latridae 3 5
Cepolidae 3 45
Cichlidae 236 1713
Embiotocidae 13 24
Pomacentridae 29 405
Labridae 71 549
Odacidae 6 12
Scaridae 10 100
Bathymasteridae 3 7
Zoarcidae 60 303
Stichaeidae 35 70
Cryptacanthodidae 1 4
Pholidae 4 15
Anarhichadidae 2 5
Ptilichthyidae 1 1
Zaproridae 1 1
Scytalinidae 1 1
Bovichtidae 3 11
Pseudaphritidae 1 2
Eleginopsidae 1 1
Nototheniidae 14 54
Harpagiferidae 1 11
Artedidraconidae 4 35
Bathydraconidae 11 17
Channichthyidae 11 25
Chiasmodontidae 4 32
Champsodontidae 1 13
Trichodontidae 2 2
Ammodytidae 7 31
Trachinidae 2 9
Uranoscopidae 8 53
Trichonotidae 1 10
Creediidae 8 19
Leptoscopidae 3 5
Percophidae 11 50
Pinguipedidae 7 90
Cheimarrichthyidae 1 1
Pholidichthyidae 1 2
Tripterygiidae 29 178
Labrisomidae 16 120
Clinidae 26 88
Chaenopsidae 14 96
Dactyloscopidae 9 48
Blenniidae 58 401
Icosteidae 1 1
Callionymidae 17 196
Draconettidae 2 15
Rhyacichthyidae 2 3
Odontobutidae 6 23
Eleotridae 33 179
Thalasseleotrididae 2 3
Gobiidae 249 1850
Kraemeriidae 2 9
Microdesmidae 13 89
Xenisthmidae 6 15
Schindleriidae 1 5
Kurtidae 1 2
Ephippidae 8 15
Scatophagidae 2 4
Siganidae 1 29
Luvaridae 1 1
Zanclidae 1 1
Acanthuridae 6 84
Scombrolabracidae 1 1
Sphyraenidae 1 28
Gempylidae 16 24
Trichiuridae 10 45
Scombridae 15 54
Xiphiidae 1 1
Istiophoridae 5 11
Amarsipidae 1 1
Centrolophidae 7 31
Nomeidae 3 16
Ariommatidae 1 7
Tetragonuridae 1 3
Stromateidae 3 17
Anabantidae 4 33
Helostomatidae 1 1
Osphronemidae 14 133
Channidae 2 42
Caproidae 2 18
Pleuronectiformes 11 133 787
Psettodidae 1 3
Citharidae 4 6
Scophthalmidae 4 9
Paralichthyidae 14 110
Bothidae 20 164
Pleuronectidae 40 103
Achiropsettidae 4 4
Samaridae 4 28
Achiridae 7 35
Soleidae 32 180
Cynoglossidae 3 145
Tetraodontiformes 10 106 440
Triacanthodidae 11 23
Triacanthidae 4 7
Balistidae 12 43
Monacanthidae 27 107
Aracanidae 6 12
Ostraciidae 7 25
Triodontidae 1 1
Tetraodontidae 28 200
Diodontidae 7 17
Molidae 3 5
Sarcopterygii 3 4 4 8
Coelacanthiformes 1 1 2
Latimeriidae 1 2
Ceratodontiformes 1 1 1
Neoceratodontidae 1 1
Lepidosireniformes 2 2 5
Lepidosirenidae 1 1
Protopteridae 1 4


Footnote: Minelli makes a definitive point about ranking as being an arbitrary and subjective decision: "The main difficulty resides in determining whether two clades in distant parts of the phylogenetic tree deserve [being] acknowledged [at] the same rank or not." (Minelli, 2009:11). "But all this amounts to counting fruit by adding apples and cherries." (Minelli, 2009:12). In other words, if counting orders, families, and genera in a narrow context (e.g., number of genera in subfamilies of the same family) may be locally sensible (within a phylogenetic tree / classification), counting families across classes or orders is most often irrelevant: for instance, why assigning clown-fishes only the subfamily rank (Pomacentridae: Amphiprioninae) while the Moorish idol has a family of its own (Zanclidae), and not a subfamily in Acanthuridae?

References:

Bailly, N., 2010. Why there may be discrepancies in the assessment of scientific names between the Catalog of Fishes and FishBase. Electronic document. [Version 2, May 6th, 2010]. //www.fishbase.org/Nomenclature/FBCofFNames.php

Eschmeyer, W.N. (ed.). Catalog of Fishes. Successive updated online versions http://research.calacademy.org/research/Ichthyology/catalog/fishcatmain.asp.

Eschmeyer, W.N. and J.D. Fong. Species of Fishes by family/subfamily. Successive updated online versions. http://research.calacademy.org/research/ichthyology/catalog/SpeciesByFamily.asp.

Minelli, A., 2009. Perspectives in animal phylogeny. Oxford University Press.

Nelson, J.S., 2006. Fishes of the World. 4th ed. Hoboken (New Jersey, USA): John Wiley & Sons. xix+601 p. [Ref. 58010]

Wiley, E.O. and G.D. Johnson, 2010. pp. 123-182. A teleost classification based on monophyletic groups. In: Origin and phylogenetic interrelationships of Teleosts. Honoring Gloria Arratia. Proceedings of the International Symposium at the ASIH Annual Meeting in St. Louis, Missouri, 2007. (Nelson et al., eds). M√ľnchen (Germany): Verlag Dr. Friedrich Pfeil. [Ref. 84927]

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