Halfbeaks


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Halfbeaks or garfishes are members of the Hemiramphidae family. They are found in the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific oceans. Most species are marine, but some inhabit freshwaters. They are named halfbeaks for their distinctive jaws, in which the lower jaws are significantly longer than their upper jaws.

Halfbeaks are omnivorous, feeding on floating sea grasses, crustaceans and small fishes. They live at the surface and are protectively coloured green or blue on the back and silvery white on the sides and ventrally. They are prone to leap and skitter at the surface. Some of these species can leap out of the water and glide like a flyingfish.

There are 11 genera and about 121 species worldwide. Malaysia has about 16 species.


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Scientific Name: Hyporhamphus quoyi  (Valenciennes, 1847)
English Name: Quoy's Garfish, Quoy's Halfbeak
Mandarin Name: 黑尾鱵 (Hēi wěi zhēn), 水针 (Shuǐ zhēn)
Local Malay Name: Jolong-jolong, Jolong Kuala
Local Hokkien: Chui Chiam