These are a group of aquatic vertebrates possessing two sets of paired fins, and a number of unpaired fins used for locomotion. They breathe using external respiratory organs called gills. There are approximately 20,000 different species of fishes worldwide that can range in size from half-inch gobbies to a 45-foot whale shark. They are distributed throughout all types of waters; fresh, brackish and marine.
Some of the most well known benefits to humans are the consumption of fish stocks for food and their use in medicine. Fishes help transport nutrients within an ecosystem or between ecosystems, and their behavior often benefits other species as well, especially when they move around gravel and sand during the creation of nurseries. Fishes also feed upon the larvae of certain insects, some of which are known carriers of human pathogens.
Learn more about a few of the fish species Conservation International and partners have discovered.
This specimen narrowly avoided being a snack for hungry scientists in the field near the Sipaliwini River, Suriname.
This species of catfish was found in a pristine river rich with many other fish species in the Acarai Mountains just north of the border between Guyana and Brazil.
This colorful fish was named in honor of the Ye’kuana indigenous peoples who live in the Caura basin. It was discovered in the Kakada river, a tributary of the Caura surrounded by pristine tropical forest.