Site hosted by Build your free website today!

Lobe-finned Fish

Please choose an animal from the list below:

Family Latimeriidae


Comoros Coelacanth
Sulawesi Coelacanth

Order Crossopterygii

This small order contains some of the more unusual prehistoric fish known almost exclusively from the fossil record. The members of this order are known as fringe-finned or lobe-finned fish due to the unusual shape of their fins. The tail is three-lobed, and the body is covered in hard armour-like scales. Their skeletons are mostly cartilaginous material. These fish have lungs, but they are either so heavily calcified that they serve no purpose or are used as a storage area for fat. They lack the internal nostrils that many other prehistoric fish had. This order consists mainly of marine fish. All species in this order were thought to be extinct. However, one specimen, a coelacanth, was captured by a fisherman off the coast of Africa in 1938, and in 1999 a separate species of coelacanth was discovered off Indonesia..

There are several families in this order comprised of extinct fish such as the Rhipidistians. There is only one living family with two living members:

Latimeriidae (coelacanths) 2 spp