Skip to content

Structure and function in the catfish

by R. Mc N Alexander
Journal of Zoology ()
Get full text at journal


The catfish (Siluroidei) appear to have evolved from an ancestor which, in most respects other than the form of its teeth, resembled primitive Characinoidei. In the first part of this paper it is shown that most of the numerous and profound anatomical changes which have occurred in the course of their evolution from this ancestor can be related to one or other of three basic changes: depression of the body in adaptation to bottom-feeding habits, sensory modification in adaptation to nocturnal habits, and the evolution of defensive fin spines. Diplomystes is more primitive than other known catfish in the form of its maxilla and pectoral girdle, and in the posterior position of its dorsal fin. The second part of the paper is concerned with some of the more specialized families of catfish (Mochokidae, Siluridae, Schilbeidae, Malapteruridae, Clariidae, Callichthyidae and Loricariidae). The specializations in each case are described, and related to the habits of the fish.

Cite this document (BETA)

Readership Statistics

41 Readers on Mendeley
by Discipline
80% Agricultural and Biological Sciences
7% Environmental Science
5% Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
by Academic Status
24% Student > Ph. D. Student
22% Researcher
10% Student > Bachelor
by Country
5% Brazil
2% Spain
2% Colombia

Sign up today - FREE

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research. Learn more

  • All your research in one place
  • Add and import papers easily
  • Access it anywhere, anytime

Start using Mendeley in seconds!

Sign up & Download

Already have an account? Sign in