How Many Different Types Of Fish Are There?

Quick Read show Introduction The Different Types of Fish Jawless Fish Cartilaginous Fish Bony Fish Ray-Finned Fish Lobe-Finned Fish The Diversity of Fish The Importance



Sobat Penurut, fish are fascinating creatures that live in almost every body of water on Earth. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, and are an important part of many ecosystems. But have you ever wondered just how many different types of fish there are? In this article, we’ll explore the world of fish and try to answer that question.

Before we dive in, it’s important to note that the number of fish species is constantly changing as new species are discovered and others go extinct. As of 2021, there are approximately 33,600 known species of fish, but that number is expected to increase as scientists continue to explore the depths of the ocean and study fish in their natural habitats.

The Different Types of Fish

There are many different ways to classify fish, but one of the most common is by their anatomy. Fish can be divided into three main groups based on their skeletal structure: jawless fish, cartilaginous fish, and bony fish. Let’s take a closer look at each group.

Jawless Fish

Jawless fish, also known as agnathans, are some of the oldest fish species on Earth. They have a cylindrical body shape and lack both jaws and scales. Instead, they have a circular mouth with sharp teeth that they use to latch onto their prey. There are only two living species of jawless fish: hagfish and lampreys.

Cartilaginous Fish

Cartilaginous fish, also known as Chondrichthyes, are characterized by their cartilaginous skeletons and five to seven gill slits on the sides of their heads. Sharks, rays, and skates are all examples of cartilaginous fish. They have a diverse range of shapes and sizes, and some can grow to be over 30 feet long.

Bony Fish

Bony fish, also known as Osteichthyes, are the most diverse group of fish and include over 95% of all fish species. They are characterized by their bony skeletons and gill covers, known as opercula. Bony fish can be further divided into two groups: ray-finned fish and lobe-finned fish.

Ray-Finned Fish

Ray-finned fish, also known as Actinopterygii, are the most common type of bony fish. They have thin, spiny rays that support their fins and a swim bladder that helps them control their buoyancy. Examples of ray-finned fish include salmon, tuna, and trout.

Lobe-Finned Fish

Lobe-finned fish, also known as Sarcopterygii, are a rare and ancient group of bony fish that are characterized by their fleshy, lobed fins. They are believed to be the ancestors of all land vertebrates, including humans. There are only eight living species of lobe-finned fish, including the coelacanth.

The Diversity of Fish

As we’ve seen, fish come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, and they can be found in almost every aquatic environment. Some fish live in freshwater rivers and lakes, while others live in saltwater oceans and seas. Some fish are predators that hunt for their food, while others are herbivores that feed on plants and algae.

One of the most fascinating things about fish is their ability to adapt to their environment. Some fish have evolved unique features that allow them to survive in extreme conditions, such as the deep sea or hot springs. Other fish have developed complex social behaviors, such as schooling, that help them avoid predators and find food.

The Importance of Fish

Fish are an important part of many ecosystems and play a vital role in the food chain. They are a source of food for humans and other animals, and they help regulate the populations of other aquatic organisms. Additionally, many fish species have been used for medicinal purposes for centuries.

However, fish populations around the world are facing numerous threats, including overfishing, habitat destruction, and climate change. It’s important that we take steps to protect these important creatures and the ecosystems they inhabit.

The Future of Fish

As we’ve seen, the world of fish is incredibly diverse and fascinating. While we may never know exactly how many different types of fish there are, one thing is certain: there is still so much to learn about these incredible creatures. By studying fish and their habitats, we can gain a greater understanding of the natural world and work to protect it for future generations.


1. What is the largest fish in the world?

The largest fish in the world is the whale shark, which can grow up to 40 feet long and weigh over 20 tons.

2. What is the smallest fish in the world?

The smallest fish in the world is the Paedocypris fish, which is only about 7.9 millimeters long.

3. How do fish breathe?

Fish breathe through their gills, which extract oxygen from the water as it flows over them.

4. Can fish feel pain?

While it’s unclear whether or not fish experience pain in the same way that humans do, they do have nerve endings and can respond to noxious stimuli.

5. How do fish communicate?

Fish communicate using a variety of methods, including visual displays, sound production, and chemical signals.

6. What is the oldest fish species?

The oldest fish species still living today is the coelacanth, which has been around for over 400 million years.

7. How many fish species are threatened with extinction?

As of 2021, over 1,000 fish species are threatened with extinction due to human activities.


Nah, that’s a brief overview of the world of fish and the many different types that exist. From jawless fish to lobe-finned fish, each group has its own unique characteristics and adaptations. While we may never know exactly how many different types of fish there are, it’s clear that they play an important role in our world and deserve our protection and respect. So let’s do our part to preserve these fascinating creatures and the ecosystems they call home.


Mimin hopes that this article has been informative and engaging. However, it’s important to note that the information presented here is based on current scientific knowledge, which is always subject to change. Additionally, the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of our company. If you have any questions or concerns about the content presented here, please consult a qualified expert.

Type of Fish Examples
Jawless Fish Hagfish, lampreys
Cartilaginous Fish Sharks, rays, skates
Bony Fish Salmon, tuna, trout, coelacanth


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