Fish Morphology Sea Grant

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PROCEDURES Review fish anatomy and explain that all fish have the same basic body. parts however those parts may look different Have students. hypothesize why different body parts are shaped differently Introduce. the concept of fish morphology or how the form and shape of a fish. and its parts influence function Students will spend approximately 10. 30 minutes doing Gyotaku the ancient Japanese art of fish printing. using rubber models or real fish If real fish are used wash blot dry. and if frozen thaw slightly before printing Lay fish flat on top of. newspaper Brush a thin layer of paint on the exposed side of the fish. The best prints result from the least amount of paint while still. attaining full coverage Carefully lay a sheet of paper on top of the. painted fish and gently press paper down onto all parts of the fish to. help pick up details Slowly lift the paper to reveal the print and place. aside to dry Often a fresh coat of paint is not necessary before the next. print Have students label the external anatomy of the fish and use the. fish morphology charts to label the body shape of their fish and the. fish s tail on their prints Next have students compare and contrast the. morphology of their fish to the prints that were made from other. species of fish Have students write a paragraph about their fish s. possible behavior and habitat based on its shape and anatomy. BACKGROUND Fish shape and anatomy helps us discover information about how a fish. moves where and how the fish lives and how it has adapted to its. environment By studying the morphology of living things humans have. learned how to better design machines such as submarines torpedoes. airplanes and automobiles Body shape mouth location and size tail. shape and color all give indication of how fish live and function For. example we know by the shape and color of a flounder that it lives on. the sea bed floor and swims like a flying bird Because its top is brown. it blends in with the ocean floor Since both eyes are on the same side. of its head it indicates that the flounder lives on or near the bottom. Body shape is a good indicator of how a fish moves and where it lives. Fish that are flat or depressiform like a skate or flounder flap their fins. up and down to swim through the water in the same way a bird flaps its. wings They normally live on the bottom of the sea floor Meanwhile. fish that are long and skinny or filiform like an eel slither through the. water like a snake Fish that are streamlined and have an oval or. fusiform cross section like a tuna or striped bass are fast swimmers and. usually live in open water A compressiform shape like that of. angelfish looks thin when viewed from the front This body shape is. well designed for making quick turns and quick bursts of speed over. short distances Compressiform fish commonly live where there are. many places to take refuge such as ponds lakes or coral reefs or they. school together in shallow open waters, The shape of a fish s tail indicates how the fish moves and lives as well. A rounded tail or a truncated tail like that of a killifish or minnow is. good for maneuverability and short bursts of speed This kind of tail is. commonly found on fish in coastal embayments A forked tail like that. of a striped bass is good for maneuverability and speed over longer. distances Lunate or crescent shaped tails like those found on a. swordfish are not good for maneuvering but allow for great speed over. long distances and are usually found on fish that live in the open. The size and location of the mouth tells us a lot about where a fish finds. its food what food it eats and where it may live Fish with a large. mouth generally eat large pieces of food an exception is the whale. shark that filters small pieces of food through its large mouth Fish with. a small mouth generally eat small items of food such as plankton. If the mouth is oriented upwards it is a surface feeder or it feeds on. prey above it like a stargazer or stonefish If the mouth is located in. the middle front of the head like a tuna we can assume that the fish. feeds on prey directly in front of it If the mouth is oriented. downwards it is a bottom feeder like a catfish Some fish have. elongated tube like mouths to reach into crevices like a butterfly fish. or to slurp up food like a seahorse, Color Patterns help determine where a fish may be found and how it. escapes predators Fish that are camouflaged can blend in to match. surroundings to hide from predators a good example of a camouflaged. fish is a flounder which can also change colors to blend in Another. color pattern is called disruptive coloration This is when a fish has. spots stripes or patches of color to break up and diffuse the fish s. actual outline Many coral reef fish have disruptive coloration. Counter shading is when a fish such as an anchovy or tuna has a dark. back and lighter belly This enables these fish to hide in the open ocean. to hide from predators that might be looking down or up at them as. the sunlight penetrates the water column Many fish use warning. coloration or bright colors to warn other fish of the presence of. venomous spines or some other defensive mechanism Fish may also. use an advertising pattern or color to attract a mate defend its. territories or promote the idea that it can clean other fish There may. also be different forms of mimicry in fish such as false eye spots to. confuse predators into attacking the wrong end of the fish The. Stonefish or Sargassum fish mimic other objects of no interest to. enemies Finally there are fish that mimic another species of fish A. fierce Blenny mimics a helpful cleaner while the Snake eel mimics a. dangerous poisonous sea snake, Also see Fish Morphology chart included in this lesson plan. VOCABULARY Advertising Pattern A pattern or coloration that signals that the fish. may have something wanted by other fish, Anatomy The separation of the parts of an organism in order to. ascertain their position relationship structure and function. Camouflage Colors and patterns that help an object blend in with. surroundings, Compressiform Flat from side to side looks tall and thin when viewed.
from the front,Depressiform Shaped flat like a pancake. Disruptive Coloration Colors that help an object break up and distract. from its true form,Filiform Long skinny tube shape. Fusiform streamlined oval shape,Lunate Crescent or quarter moon shape. Mimicry Coloration or shape of an object that imitates something it is. Morphology The study of structure or form and overall shape. Truncate A short square or slightly rounded shape, Warning Coloration Bright colors that caution they possess great. EXTENSIONS See NJMSC Lesson Plan Build a Fish, See Student worksheet Fish Morphology included in this lesson plan.
Bond C E 1979 Biology of Fishes Saunders College Publishing. Philadelphia Pp 11 32, Robins C R G C Ray and J Douglass 1986 The Peterson Field Guide. Series A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company Boston Pp 10 11, Thurman H V 1990 Essentials of Oceanography 3rd ed Merrill. Publishing Company Columbus Pp 286 287,Internet Resources. http www aqua org animals html,Rev 11 11 10, The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium NJSGC is an affiliation of colleges universities and other. groups dedicated to advancing knowledge and stewardship of New Jersey s marine and coastal. environment NJSGC meets its mission through its innovative research education and outreach. programs For more information about NJSGC visit njseagrant org. The Education Program at the,New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium.
22 Magruder Road Fort Hancock NJ 07732 732 872 1300 njseagrant org. Fish Morphology Fish Shapes,The Education Program at the. New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium, 22 Magruder Road Fort Hancock NJ 07732 732 872 1300 njseagrant org. Fish Morphology Student Activity 1, Study the chart below of different fish body shapes and tail shapes The shape of a fish can tell. how the fish moves through the water Answer the following questions selecting fish from the. pictures above Tell what about each fish causes you to select each answer. 1 Which of the fish above swims the fastest in open water. 2 Which fish can make sharp turns,3 Which fish can not make sharp turns. 4 Which fish is a great sprinter but not fit for a long distance marathon. 5 Which fish swims like a flying bird, 6 Which fish slithers through the water like a snake.
7 Which fish lives on the sea floor, The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium NJSGC is an affiliation of colleges universities and other. groups dedicated to advancing knowledge and stewardship of New Jersey s marine and coastal. environment NJSGC meets its mission through its innovative research education and outreach. programs For more information about NJSGC visit njseagrant org. The Education Program at the,New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium. 22 Magruder Road Fort Hancock NJ 07732 732 872 1300 njseagrant org. Fish Morphology Student Activity 1 Answers, 1 A Its shape is fusiform and it has a lunate tail There is less drag on the fish so it can swim. faster over longer distances,2 B A rounded tail is best for maneuvering. 3 A A lunate tail is worst for maneuvering, 4 B The large surface area of the rounded tail is great for propulsion but creates the greatest.
drag so the fish tires easily,5 C It has a depressiform shape. 6 D It has a filiform shape, 7 C It is depressiform and both eyes are on the same side of its head. The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium NJSGC is an affiliation of colleges universities and other. groups dedicated to advancing knowledge and stewardship of New Jersey s marine and coastal. environment NJSGC meets its mission through its innovative research education and outreach. programs For more information about NJSGC visit njseagrant org. The Education Program at the,New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium. 22 Magruder Road Fort Hancock NJ 07732 732 872 1300 njseagrant org. Fish Morphology Student Activity 2, Study the fish anatomy diagram Class Osteichthyes and answer the following questions. 1 What part of the fish is used to propel through the water. 2 Which fins give the fish stability and keep it from rolling over. 3 Which fins are used as the fish s brakes, 4 Which fins help the fish move backwards and up and down in the water.
5 Which fin helps the fish steer,6 Which part of the fish protects the gills. 7 Why is it that fish swimming together in a school never run into each other. The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium NJSGC is an affiliation of colleges universities and other. groups dedicated to advancing knowledge and stewardship of New Jersey s marine and coastal. environment NJSGC meets its mission through its innovative research education and outreach. programs For more information about NJSGC visit njseagrant org. The Education Program at the,New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium. 22 Magruder Road Fort Hancock NJ 07732 732 872 1300 njseagrant org. Fish Morphology Student Activity 2, The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium NJSGC is an affiliation of colleges universities and other. groups dedicated to advancing knowledge and stewardship of New Jersey s marine and coastal. environment NJSGC meets its mission through its innovative research education and outreach. programs For more information about NJSGC visit njseagrant org. The Education Program at the,New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium. 22 Magruder Road Fort Hancock NJ 07732 732 872 1300 njseagrant org. Fish Morphology Student Activity 2 Answers,1 The caudal fin.
2 The dorsal fins and anal fin,3 The pectoral fin and pelvic fin. 4 The pectoral fin and pelvic fin,5 The caudal fin. 6 The operculum, 7 The lateral line allows the fish to sense changes in the pressure of the surrounding water and. alert them to movement such as another fish turning. The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium NJSGC is an affiliation of colleges universities and other. groups dedicated to advancing knowledge and stewardship of New Jersey s marine and coastal. environment NJSGC meets its mission through its innovative research education and outreach. programs For more information about NJSGC visit njseagrant org. Newspaper Fish anatomy diagram and fish morphology chart Fish Morphology Fish Shapes The Education Program at the New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium 22 Magruder Road Fort Hancock NJ 07732 732 872 1300 njseagrant org Fish Morphology Student Activity 1 Study the chart below of different fish body shapes and tail shapes The shape of a fish can tell how the fish moves through the

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