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Species: Exocoetus volitans, Tropical Two-wing Flyingfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

fins uniform pale to dusky
gill rakers 29-37
juvenile - nape not humped, no barbel
D to LL: 6.5 (6-7) scale rows

Exocoetus volitans Linnaeus, 1758

Tropical Two-wing Flyingfish

Elongate, broadly cylindrical bodies; head deep; snout shorter than eye, blunt, profile steep; mouth small, short, blunt, lower jaw a little longer than upper jaw; no teeth; 29-37 gill rakers; fins without spines; dorsal 13-15 rays; anal 12-15 rays; pectoral reaches to tail fin base, its 1st ray unbranched; pelvic fin with origin nearer pectoral base than anal origin, fin very short, ends well before anal origin; anal origin under dorsal fin origin; tail deeply forked with a longer lower lobe; scales large, smooth, easily shed; normally 6.5 (6-7) rows of scales between dorsal origin and lateral line; 16-21 scales before dorsal fin; lateral line low on the body, no branch of lateral line to origin of pectoral. Juvenile elongate, no nape hump, no chin barbell.

Dark blue to blackish on back and upper sides, silvery white below; fins mainly pale or slightly dusky. Juvenile: body pale with dark vertical bars; dorsal and anal fins black at rear; pectoral and pelvics transparent.

Maximum size: 24 cm.

Habitat: pelagic in surface waters, usually offshore.

Depth: 0-20 m.

Circumtropical distribution; 35N to ~30S.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Offshore
  • Offshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Near Surface
  • Surface
  • Water column only
  • Water column
FishBase Habitat
  • Pelagic
Feeding Group
  • Data
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Zooplankton
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans)
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 24
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 20