Skip to main content

Clingfish

Clingfish

Clingfish are about 150 species of small, ray-finned bony fish found primarily in tropical marine waters. They belong to the family Gobiesocidae in the order Gobiesociformes. Clingfish are shaped like tadpoles with a wide, flattened head; they have no scales and are covered with a thick coating of slime that makes them very slippery. Clingfish are characterized by a large suction disc formed by the union of the pelvic fins and adjacent folds of flesh. This disc allows cling-fish to attach themselves to the bottom and, in this way, they are able to withstand strong currents. Clingfish have a single dorsal fin and no spines. Most species of clingfish are small, about 4 in (10 cm) or less in length, but the rocksucker (Chorisochismus dentex )clingfishof South Africa may grow as large as 12 in (30 cm) long.

Clingfish are most commonly found in the inter-tidal zone of oceans worldwide. They are rarely seen swimming in the open water, but rather it moves in short dashes and often remains cryptically attached to sessile invertebrates and vegetation.

A number of species inhabit Caribbean waters, and about 20 species are found along the Pacific coast of North America. Among these North American species is the northern clingfish (Gobiesox meandricus )whichis found from California to Alaska; this species averages 6 in (15 cm) in length. Six other species of Gobiesox inhabit the North American coastal waters of the Atlantic Ocean. The most common of these species is the skilletfish (G. strumosus ), a drab, dusky fish measuring 4 in (10 cm) in length.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Clingfish." The Gale Encyclopedia of Science. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Oct. 2018 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Clingfish." The Gale Encyclopedia of Science. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 23, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/clingfish

"Clingfish." The Gale Encyclopedia of Science. . Retrieved October 23, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/clingfish

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.