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: 5133
Total count of Species: 33910


Number of Valid
Kingdom Phylum
Class
#6
Order
#64
Family
#549
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 51 200 1205
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 51 292
Scyliorhinidae 17 157
Proscylliidae 3 7
Pseudotriakidae 3 4
Leptochariidae 1 1
Triakidae 9 46
Hemigaleidae 4 8
Carcharhinidae 12 59
Sphyrnidae 2 10
Squaliformes 7 23 137
Dalatiidae 7 9
Etmopteridae 5 51
Somniosidae 5 17
Oxynotidae 1 5
Centrophoridae 2 18
Squalidae 2 35
Echinorhinidae 1 2
Pristiophoriformes 1 2 8
Pristiophoridae 2 8
Squatiniformes 1 1 24
Squatinidae 1 24
Torpediniformes 4 13 67
Narkidae 6 12
Narcinidae 4 31
Hypnidae 1 1
Torpedinidae 2 23
Rhinopristiformes 2 11 56
Rhinobatidae 9 49
Pristidae 2 7
Rajiformes 3 35 300
Rajidae 19 180
Arhynchobatidae 13 105
Anacanthobatidae 3 15
Myliobatiformes 8 36 245
Hexatrygonidae 1 1
Dasyatidae 19 102
Potamotrygonidae 4 35
Urotrygonidae 2 19
Gymnuridae 1 16
Plesiobatidae 1 1
Urolophidae 3 29
Myliobatidae 5 42
Holocephali 1 3 6 56
Chimaeriformes 3 6 56
Callorhinchidae 1 3
Chimaeridae 2 45
Rhinochimaeridae 3 8
Actinopterygii 46 487 4907 32512
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 16 157 918
Protanguillidae 1 1
Synaphobranchidae 12 39
Heterenchelyidae 2 8
Myrocongridae 1 5
Muraenidae 16 200
Chlopsidae 8 25
Colocongridae 2 9
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 32 253
Hiodontidae 1 2
Pantodontidae 1 1
Osteoglossidae 2 6
Arapaimidae 2 5
Notopteridae 4 10
Mormyridae 21 228
Gymnarchidae 1 1
Clupeiformes 6 84 395
Denticipitidae 1 1
Clupeidae 54 195
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 11 489 4418
Gyrinocheilidae 1 3
Catostomidae 13 79
Vaillantellidae 1 3
Cobitidae 29 261
Barbuccidae 1 2
Serpenticobitidae 1 3
Balitoridae 36 252
Ellopostomatidae 1 2
Nemacheilidae 41 668
Psilorhynchidae 1 28
Cyprinidae 364 3117
Characiformes 22 284 2143
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 14 156
Chilodontidae 2 8
Curimatidae 8 105
Prochilodontidae 3 21
Lebiasinidae 7 77
Ctenoluciidae 2 7
Triportheidae 5 23
Gasteropelecidae 3 9
Bryconidae 4 49
Iguanodectidae 3 31
Acestrorhynchidae 7 26
Characidae 146 1116
Siluriformes 37 496 3780
Diplomystidae 2 7
Cetopsidae 5 42
Chacidae 1 4
Olyridae 1 7
Plotosidae 10 42
Bagridae 21 235
Akysidae 5 57
Amblycipitidae 4 37
Sisoridae 18 217
Erethistidae 7 45
Pangasiidae 4 28
Siluridae 12 107
Aspredinidae 13 42
Auchenipteridae 22 119
Doradidae 33 95
Heptapteridae 24 213
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 15 67
Nematogenyidae 1 1
Trichomycteridae 42 286
Callichthyidae 9 206
Loricariidae 114 936
Scoloplacidae 1 6
Astroblepidae 1 67
Gymnotiformes 5 35 234
Gymnotidae 2 40
Rhamphichthyidae 3 17
Hypopomidae 9 46
Sternopygidae 6 42
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 11 225
Salmonidae 11 225
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 44 264
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 3 74
Bathysauridae 1 2
Paralepididae 12 58
Anotopteridae 1 3
Evermannellidae 3 8
Omosudidae 1 1
Alepisauridae 1 2
Pseudotrichonotidae 1 2
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 84 618
Muraenolepididae 2 9
Bregmacerotidae 1 14
Euclichthyidae 1 1
Macrouridae 35 405
Moridae 18 108
Melanonidae 1 2
Gadidae 13 23
Lotidae 6 22
Phycidae 2 11
Merlucciidae 5 23
Ophidiiformes 5 119 532
Ophidiidae 50 258
Carapidae 8 36
Bythitidae 53 212
Aphyonidae 6 23
Parabrotulidae 2 3
Batrachoidiformes 1 23 83
Batrachoididae 23 83
Lophiiformes 18 72 359
Lophiidae 4 28
Antennariidae 13 47
Tetrabrachiidae 2 2
Lophichthyidae 1 1
Brachionichthyidae 5 14
Chaunacidae 2 22
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 49 167
Gobiesocidae 49 167
Atheriniformes 10 51 355
Atherinidae 14 71
Bedotiidae 2 16
Melanotaeniidae 7 91
Pseudomugilidae 3 18
Telmatherinidae 5 18
Notocheiridae 1 1
Isonidae 1 5
Dentatherinidae 1 1
Phallostethidae 4 23
Atherinopsidae 13 111
Cyprinodontiformes 10 132 1306
Aplocheilidae 2 14
Nothobranchiidae 12 272
Rivulidae 38 411
Valenciidae 1 3
Fundulidae 3 44
Cyprinodontidae 10 137
Profundulidae 1 9
Goodeidae 18 49
Poeciliidae 44 349
Anablepidae 3 18
Beloniformes 6 34 271
Scomberesocidae 2 5
Belonidae 10 38
Hemiramphidae 8 60
Zenarchopteridae 5 63
Exocoetidae 7 68
Adrianichthyidae 2 37
Stephanoberyciformes 4 11 70
Stephanoberycidae 4 4
Hispidoberycidae 1 1
Melamphaidae 5 63
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 29
Hypoptychidae 2 2
Gasterosteidae 5 18
Aulorhynchidae 1 1
Indostomidae 1 3
Pegasidae 2 5
Syngnathiformes 5 65 323
Aulostomidae 1 3
Fistulariidae 1 4
Centriscidae 5 12
Solenostomidae 1 6
Syngnathidae 57 298
Synbranchiformes 3 13 120
Synbranchidae 4 24
Mastacembelidae 3 86
Chaudhuriidae 6 10
Scorpaeniformes 36 290 1641
Sebastidae 7 132
Setarchidae 3 7
Neosebastidae 2 18
Scorpaenidae 25 222
Apistidae 3 3
Tetrarogidae 17 40
Synanceiidae 9 36
Eschmeyeridae 1 1
Perryenidae 1 1
Aploactinidae 17 48
Pataecidae 3 3
Gnathanacanthidae 1 1
Congiopodidae 3 8
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 32 405
Mugiliformes 1 28 78
Mugilidae 28 78
Perciformes 163 1759 11248
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 75 544
Ostracoberycidae 1 3
Symphysanodontidae 2 13
Centrogenyidae 1 1
Pseudochromidae 24 152
Grammatidae 2 13
Callanthiidae 2 16
Plesiopidae 12 50
Opistognathidae 4 83
Terapontidae 16 52
Banjosidae 1 3
Kuhliidae 1 13
Elassomatidae 1 7
Centrarchidae 8 38
Percidae 11 239
Priacanthidae 4 19
Apogonidae 38 352
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 9 48
Bramidae 7 20
Caristiidae 4 19
Arripidae 1 4
Emmelichthyidae 3 17
Lutjanidae 17 112
Caesionidae 4 23
Lobotidae 1 2
Datnioididae 1 5
Hapalogenyidae 1 8
Gerreidae 8 53
Haemulidae 19 134
Sparidae 37 158
Lethrinidae 5 41
Nemipteridae 5 67
Sciaenidae 66 286
Polynemidae 8 42
Mullidae 6 87
Pempheridae 2 78
Glaucosomatidae 1 4
Leptobramidae 1 1
Bathyclupeidae 1 7
Toxotidae 1 7
Dichistiidae 1 2
Kyphosidae 12 54
Parascorpididae 1 1
Drepaneidae 1 3
Monodactylidae 2 6
Chaetodontidae 12 131
Pomacanthidae 8 91
Enoplosidae 1 1
Pentacerotidae 7 13
Polycentridae 2 3
Nandidae 3 9
Badidae 2 29
Pristolepididae 1 8
Oplegnathidae 1 7
Cirrhitidae 12 33
Chironemidae 1 6
Aplodactylidae 1 5
Cheilodactylidae 4 27
Latridae 3 5
Cepolidae 5 23
Cichlidae 235 1700
Embiotocidae 13 24
Pomacentridae 29 396
Labridae 71 530
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 30
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 89
Cheimarrichthyidae 1 1
Pholidichthyidae 1 2
Tripterygiidae 29 178
Labrisomidae 16 120
Clinidae 26 88
Chaenopsidae 14 96
Dactyloscopidae 9 48
Blenniidae 58 400
Icosteidae 1 1
Callionymidae 17 194
Draconettidae 2 15
Rhyacichthyidae 2 3
Odontobutidae 6 23
Eleotridae 33 178
Thalasseleotrididae 2 3
Gobiidae 249 1809
Kraemeriidae 2 9
Microdesmidae 12 86
Xenisthmidae 6 15
Schindleriidae 1 4
Kurtidae 1 2
Ephippidae 8 15
Scatophagidae 2 4
Siganidae 1 29
Luvaridae 1 1
Zanclidae 1 1
Acanthuridae 6 83
Scombrolabracidae 1 1
Sphyraenidae 1 27
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 41
Caproidae 2 18
Pleuronectiformes 11 133 785
Psettodidae 1 3
Citharidae 4 6
Scophthalmidae 4 9
Paralichthyidae 14 110
Bothidae 20 163
Pleuronectidae 40 103
Achiropsettidae 4 4
Samaridae 4 28
Achiridae 7 35
Soleidae 32 179
Cynoglossidae 3 145
Tetraodontiformes 10 106 439
Triacanthodidae 11 23
Triacanthidae 4 7
Balistidae 12 42
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]. http://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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