LADYFISHES - ELOPIDAE
Chiefly marine; enter estuaries and freshwater, especially as juveniles. Distribution: tropical and subtropical waters.
Larval stage translucid
Body fusiform, oval, slightly compressed. Eyes big, partially covered with adipose eyelids. Mouth terminal, upper jaw extending to posterior border of eyes, lower jaw prominent, bony gular plate ventral between its two branches. Lateral line scales usually 95-120. Large pseudobranchiae. Branchiostegal rays 27-35. Usually 20-25 rays in dorsal fin; the last dorsal ray not produced. Rays in anal fin usually 13-18. Pelvic fin with usually 12-16 rays, inserted below or behind dorsal fin origin. Dorsal and anal with base in scaly sheath. Pectorals and pelvics with bony axillary projection. Vertebrae 63-79.
Greek, ellops = a kind of serpent