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Drum Fish

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Matilda Cruz
Matilda double majored in zoology and animal behavior at the University of Hawaii. She’s been an animal lover from a young age and knew she wanted to study them even more for her career. She’s always looking for ways to spread her animal knowledge.

Our animal of the day is the drum fish. Their scientific name is Sciaenidae, from the Latin word for sea fish, sciaena. The entire family is classified as Perciformes, a group of ray-finned fish. Its family includes about 300 species. Including; Freshwater Drum, Totuava, Common Weakfish, California Corbina, Red Drum, Black Drum.

Interesting Facts About Drum Fish

  • The drum fish has a long, rounded body, a notch between the ray and spine, and two dorsal fins extending along the back. Most drum fish have tiny mouths, jaws, and teeth, but others have big mouths, protruding jaws, and vicious canine teeth. The predominant hue is silver, while other species exist in red, brown, black, and white.
  • The swimming bladder is linked to a huge muscle, which is the main distinctive feature of this family. The fish’s loud croaking or cracking noise is a result of this muscle’s ability to magnify sound dramatically. This sound is used to attract mates during mating season.
  • The Drum fish is endemic to tropical and temperate saltwater regions around the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans. A few species live in freshwater lakes and rivers throughout the year, either part of the time or exclusively.
  • The drum fish is a bottom-dweller that feeds on insects, crustaceans, other fish and mussels. Some species’ large canines help them crush crabs and other shelled prey.
  • The most common breeding season is during the summer. The male drum fish uses its unique vocalization to attract a suitable mate. The average life of the freshwater drum is 6 to 13 years, but some saltwater species can survive up to 50 years. After copulating, the female can lay thousands or even millions of eggs at one time.
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