Lizardfishes


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Lizardfishes, sauries and bombay ducks are the common names used for the members of Synodontidae family. They occur in the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific oceans. They are mainly saltwater fishes but can also occur in brackish water. They are recognized as small cylindrical fishes with spineless fins and large mouth full of slender sharp teeth, even on tongue. They are commonly called lizardfishes, due to their resemblance to lizard.

Lizardfishes are bottom-living fishes found in coastal, estuarine, and offshore shelf waters, to depths of about 300 m. They are voracious predators, feeding mainly on other small fishes and crustaceans.

There are 3 genera and about 68 species of Synodontidae worldwide. Malaysia has 3 genera and about 16 species.


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Scientific Name: Saurida tumbil  (Bloch, 1795)
English Name: Greater Lizardfish
French Name: Anoli tumbil
Mandarin Name | 鱼类中文名: 狗母魚 (Gǒu mǔ yú)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Conor, Mengkerong, Ubi, Pucung, Conor Curut
Bahasa Indonesia: Buntut Kerbau, Bitak Belande, Beloso, Kadil
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาปากคมใหญ่ (Plā pāk khum yai)
Main Identification Features: Head pointed and depressed. Snout broader than long. Pectoral fin short, not or only just reaching to insertion of pelvic fin. The tips of the dorsal and pectorals and the lower caudal lobe blackish. Adipose fin with a black marking.
Size: Maximum fork length about 60 cm.
Habitat and Ecology: Sand and mud bottoms, usually 10 to 60 m depth. Feeds on fishes, crustaceans, and squids. Regularly migrate between freshwater and the sea.






Scientific Name: Saurida undosquamis  (Richardson, 1848)
English Name: Brushtooth Lizardfish
French Name: Anoli à grandes écailles
Mandarin Name | 鱼类中文名: 狗母魚 (Gǒu mǔ yú)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Conor, Mengkerong, Ubi, Pucung, Conor Ekor Rintik
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาปากคมจุด (Plā pāk khum cud)
Local Hokkien/Teochew: Kau Bo
Main Identification Features: The head pointed and depressed; the snout rounded. Pectoral fin short, its posterior tip not reaching a line between origins of pelvic and dorsal fins. Upper margin of caudal fin with black dots. Adipose fin with a black marking.
Size: Maximum standard length about 28 cm.
Habitat and Ecology: Sand and mud bottoms, to 200 m depth. Feeds on fishes, crustaceans, and other invertebrates. Regularly migrate between freshwater and the sea.






Scientific Name: Synodus hoshinonis  Tanaka, 1917
English Name: Blackear Lizardfish
Mandarin Name | 鱼类中文名: 狗母魚 (Gǒu mǔ yú)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Conor, Mengkerong, Ubi, Ubi Pelana
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาปากคม (Plā pāk khum)
Main Identification Features: Body with alternating pale and dark saddle blotches above. Black blotch at upper edge of operculum.
Size: Maximum total length 26 cm, commonly to 12 cm.
Habitat and Ecology: Sand and mud bottoms, 60 to 100 m depth. Feeds on fishes, crustaceans, and other invertebrates.






Scientific Name: Synodus myops  (Forster, 1801)
Synonym: Trachinocephalus myops  (Forster, 1801)
English Name: Bluntnose Lizardfish, Painted Grinner, Snakefish
Mandarin Name | 鱼类中文名: 大头花杆狗母 (Dàtóu huā gān gǒu mǔ), 狗母魚 (Gǒu mǔ yú)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Conor, Mengkerong, Ubi, Pucung
Bahasa Indonesia: Ikan Lumpah-lumpah, Bitak Belande, Beloso, Aesi Puti
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาปากคมสี (Plā pāk khum s̄ī)
Main Identification Features: Snout very short. Body with alternating narrow dark-edged pale blue and yellow stripes. A large black spot at upper end of gill opening.
Size: Maximum standard length about 25 cm.
Habitat and Ecology: Soft bottoms in estuaries, bays and coastal waters, to 300 m depth, usually 3 to 90 m. Feeds on fishes and crustaceans.








Scientific Name: Synodus variegatus  (Lacepède, 1803)
English Name: Variegated Lizardfish
Mandarin Name | 鱼类中文名: 红斑狗母 (Hóngbān gǒu mǔ), 狗母魚 (Gǒu mǔ yú)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Conor, Mengkarong, Ubi Sisik Pipi
Bahasa Indonesia: Ikan Totate, Jarah Gigi, Bicara, Bitak Belande, Beloso
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาปากคมลาย (Plā pāk khum lāy)
Main Identification Features: Body with dark red hourglass or saddle shaped markings. A pale stripe below lateral line.
Size: Maximum total length 40 cm, commonly to 30 cm.
Habitat and Ecology: Deep lagoon and seaward reefs on sandy and hard bottom, 3 to 120 m depth. Feeds primarily on fishes and crustaceans.







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