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Molidae
MOLAS OR OCEAN SUNFISHES
Molas; Ocean sunfishes

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Masturus
© Copyright Photographer/SFTEP, 2002 · 0
Masturus
Ranzania laevis
www.fao.org Copyright Michel Lamboeuf · 0
Ranzania laevis
español

Overview
Main identification features
  • body very deep, very compressed
  • dorsal and anal finsat rear, very long
  • c: extremely short
  • mouth: very small beak
  • no pelvics
FAMILY MOLIDAE

OCEAN SUNFISHES, MOLAS

In sunfishes the body is compressed and deep; the tail fin is reduced to a vertically elongate, undulating fold at the rear of the body inmediately behind the dorsal and anal fins; the dorsal and anal fins are long and high, and are used for locomotion; the mouth is small and terminal and contains a beak composed of teeth fused to the jaws; gill openings are small; pelvic fins are absent.

Molas are oceanic fishes, with four species in three genera that are found worldwide in tropical to warm temperate areas. Three species occur in the tropical eastern Pacific.


References
  • Balart , E. F. , Castro-Aguirre , J. L. , Aurioles-Gamboa , D. , García-Rodriguez , F. and Villavicencio-Garayzar, C., 1995., Adiciones a la ictiofauna de Bahía de la Paz, Baja California Sur, México., Hidrobiologica, 5:79-85.
  • Balart , E. F. , Catro-Aguirre , J. L. and Amador-Silva, E., 2000., The first eastern Pacific report of the sharptail mola, Mola lanceolata (Tetraodontiformes: Molidae)., Calif. Fish & Game, 86(2):156-158.
  • Briggs, J.C., 1960., Fishes of worldwide (circumtropical) distribution., Copeia, 1960:171-180.
  • Béarez, P., 1996., Lista de los Peces Marinos del Ecuador Continental., Revista de Biologia Tropical, 44:731-741.
  • Castro-Aguirre, J.L. and Balart, E.F., 2002., La ictiofauna de las islas Revillagigedos y sus relaciones zoogeograficas, con comentarios acerca de su origen y evolucion. En: Lozano-Vilano, M. L. (Ed.). Libro Jubilar en Honor al Dr. Salvador Contreras Balderas., Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo León:153-170.
  • Chirichigno, N., 1998., Clave para identificar los peces marinos del Peru., Instituto del Mar del Peru, Informe., 44(2 Ed.):1-387.
  • Eschmeyer , W. N. , Herald , E. S. and Hamman, H., 1983., A field guide to Pacific coast fishes of North America from the Gulf of Alaska to Baja California. Peterson Field Guide Ser. 28., Houghton Mifflin:336pp.
  • Findley, L.T., Hendrickx, M.E., Brusca, R.C., van der Heiden, A.M., Hastings, P.A., Torre, J., 2003., Diversidad de la Macrofauna Marina del Golfo de California, Mexico., CD-ROM versión 1.0. Projecto de la Macrofauna del Golfo .  Derechos reservados de los autores y Conservación Internacional.
  • Fischer , W. , Krup , F. , Schneider , W. , Sommer , C. , Carpenter , K. E. and Niem, V. H., 1995., Guia FAO para la Identificacion de Especies de para los fines de la Pesca. Pacifico Centro-Oriental. Volumen III. Vertebrados - Parte 2., FAO3:1201-1813.
  • Grove , J.S. and Lavenberg, R. J., 1997., The fishes of the Galápagos islands., Stanford University Press:863 pp.
  • Jimenez-Prado, P., Béarez, P., 2004., Peces marinos del Ecuador continental / Marine fishes of continental Ecuador., SIMBIOE/NAZCA/IFEA tomo 1 y 2.
  • Jordan, D.S., 1895., The fishes of Sinaloa., Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences (Series 2), 5:377-514.
  • Linnaeus, C., 1758., Systema Naturae, Ed. X. (Systema naturae per regna tria naturae, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata.) Holmiae., Systema Nat. ed. 10, 1:1-824.
  • Liénard, E.  ., 1840., Description d'une nouvelle espèce du genre mole (Orthagoriscus, Schn.) découverte à l'île Maurice., Rev. Zool., 3:291-292.
  • Lopez , M. I. and Bussing, W. A., 1982., Lista provisional de los peces marinos de la Costa Rica., Revista de Biologia Tropical, 30(1):5-26.
  • Love, M.S., Mecklenburg, C.W., Mecklenburg, T.A., Thorsteinson, L.K., 2005., es of the West Coast and Alaska: a checklist of North Pacific and Artic Ocena species from Baja California to the Alaska-Yukon border., U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, Biological Resources Division, 288pp.
  • Nelson, J.S., 1984., Fishes of the World (Third edition)., John Wiley and Sons:523pp.
  • Pennant, T., 1776., British zoology. 4th Edition. London., British Zool. 4th ed.,.
  • Van der Heiden , A. M. and Findley, L. T., 1988., Lista de los peces marinos del sur de Sinaloa, México., Anales del Centro de Ciencias del Mar y Limnologia de la Universidad Autonoma Nacional de Mexico, 15:209-224.

Acknowledgements

I thank Ashley MacDonald and John Pickering, University of Georgia, for technical support in building this page.


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