Institute for Biodiversity Science and Sustainability
Online Version, Updated 11 January 2021


Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes
Select the database to search:
Include unavailable names


Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes - version of 11 January 2021 (Continuously updated since the early 1980s, around the turn of the month.)

In this edition, we provide 5 new species in 2021. In 2020 there were 354 new species described.

We record 35,734 valid fish species, including 18,051 valid fish species with the tag ‘Habitat: freshwater’.

We have updated our existing page, Species by Family/Subfamily, to include counts for genera also. The page is now named Genera/Species by Family/Subfamily.

Updated Apr. 9, 2020 - Authors' Count of Species/Subspecies Descriptions. See how many species/subspecies each author has described.
This list was previously posted as a list of "batting averages", comparing total number of species descriptions to number still considered valid. The "batting average" concept was originally conceived by Dr. Eschmeyer for our 2010 paper "Marine fish diversity: history of knowledge and discovery (Pisces)", and was meant to show differences between previous eras and the modern era. It was not meant to be a critique of any individuals, nor a measure of any individual's scientific acumen. The "batting average" concept having served its purpose, it's no longer relevant to present it. In addition, most individuals are only interested in the total number of new descriptions, which is what we present here. - Jon Fong

We are making additions to:

Van der Laan, R., W. N. Eschmeyer & R. Fricke 2014 (11 Nov.), Family-group names of Recent fishes. Zootaxa Monograph 3882 (1), 1-230. DOI 10.11646/zootaxa.3882.1.1

Download the addenda to the family-group list as a PDF.

See Family Group Names for future updates by R. Van der Laan.

By default, search results will not include item 3 names -- unavailable names that detract from the main list of available names. These are mostly names mentioned in synonymy, names in lists, etc. They are still in the database, so if you want to see them, check the box labeled Include unavailable names before searching.

Citing Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes

Fricke, R., Eschmeyer, W. N. & Van der Laan, R. (eds) 2020.  ESCHMEYER'S CATALOG OF FISHES: GENERA, SPECIES, REFERENCES. ( Electronic version accessed dd mmm 2020.

Fricke, R. (ed) 2020.  ESCHMEYER'S CATALOG OF FISHES: REFERENCES. ( Electronic version accessed dd mmm 2020. [Ron Fricke devoted much time to improving references and journals, many of which had not been examined in 15 to 25 years. Please remember that the title of a paper often differs in three places: the title on the paper itself, the contents listed by the journal, and in the PDF provided by the journal. Ron tends to follow the title on the pdf for recent papers and the title on the original for earlier publications. Many of our dates of publication are documented for priority purposes. Some current journals have a target date, but actual publication is often delayed. For nomenclatural date problems, we will help if we can.]

Van der Laan, R. & Fricke, R. 2020.  ESCHMEYER'S CATALOG OF FISHES: FAMILY-GROUP NAMES. ( Electronic version accessed dd mmm 2020.

Van der Laan, R., Fricke, R. & Eschmeyer, W. N. (eds) 2020.  ESCHMEYER'S CATALOG OF FISHES: CLASSIFICATION. ( Electronic version accessed dd mmm 2020.

Fricke, R. & Eschmeyer, W. N. 2020.  ESCHMEYER'S CATALOG OF FISHES: JOURNALS. ( Electronic version accessed dd mmm 2020. [Includes all journals appearing in the Catalog, including publication information and ISSN numbers.]

Fricke, R. & Eschmeyer, W. N. 2020  ESCHMEYER'S CATALOG OF FISHES: GUIDE TO FISH COLLECTIONS. ( Electronic version accessed dd mmm 2020. [Arranged by museum abbreviation and by country, includes type catalogs and historical publications and www sites where available.]

Fricke, R., Eschmeyer, W. N. & Fong, J. D. 2020  ESCHMEYER'S CATALOG OF FISHES: GENERA/SPECIES BY FAMILY/SUBFAMILY. ( Electronic version accessed dd mmm 2020. [Recalculated with each new version; based on current literature, this provides counts of available genus and species names, valid genera and species, and genera and species described in the last 10 years by family/subfamily.]

Please remember that if you got to Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes from Fishbase, you are NOT in Fishbase. Fishbase is a more comprehensive database for a different audience, but they use Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes in their authority file.

Some other useful sites for fishes are (1) Fishbase [Fishbase team, Manila]; (2) -- A comprehensive database on Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific (and of the Western Atlantic) [Ross Robertson]; (3) -- A database on elasmobranchs, with over 13,000 references, information on taxa, type specimens, etc. [Jürgen Pollerspöck]; (4) -- a comprehensive relational database of more than 99,350 scientific species name combinations and over 34,300 well-identified (mostly marine) fish pictures [Dennis Polack]; (5) Freshwater Fish List, 23rd edition December 2017; (6) ETYFish Project (derivations of Fish Names) by Christopher Scharpf; and (7) BioStor, for Biodiversity Heritage Library references. A very useful site is [not associated with Fishbase or Worldfish]. Maintained by Michal Mikšik and Erwin Schraml. They post new fish taxa and references as they are published.


A summary paper was published in 2010 from Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes database that might be of interest to users of the Catalog. "Marine fish diversity: history of knowledge and discovery (Pisces)." By William N. Eschmeyer, Ronald Fricke, Jon D. Fong & Dennis A. Polack. Zootaxa, no. 2525:19-50 (2 July 2010, open access, click title to download).

As always, notifying us of missed original descriptions and errors in the database or providing PDFs of recent papers is most welcome.

Bill Eschmeyer edited type localities and standardized many place names. Our style is to use current place names found on an English map (or from Wikipedia and Google sites). Should you need original localities, they can be found in the original descriptions or from particular museum holdings (often online).

Many scientific names of fish species are based on personal names; some were found to be incorrect. For example, Jordan and co-workers spelled Japanese names ending in "a" with a terminal "e" as in matsubarae; that is acceptable, with the name Latinized first. So those names do not end in "i". Remarks are provided by Eschmeyer in this version for most species based on personal names. For a review of this very technical subject, see Dubois 2007: Zootaxa No. 1550:49-68.

New treatment of synonyms: Often an author revises a genus and treats a species in detail but does not mention the species synonyms (if any). If he/she does not mention the synonyms (rather common in recent treatments) and moves the valid “parent” species to a different genus, do we move the synonyms automatically, although the revising author may not have studied or assessed the synonyms? In the past, we did not move the synonyms. Typically, this often resulted in the synonyms being in a different current genus than the valid parent species. We now move the synonyms to the genus of the valid parent species, but no “status reference” showing the new generic placement is found with the synonym. Some synonyms will be moved incorrectly, but it is considered more desirable to have the potential synonyms in the same current genus as the valid parent species.

Some conventions used in Eschmeyer's Catalog

Author plus date and a species code: The code of Zoological Nomenclature does not require a comma between the author and date, only a suggestion. In fact, we consider that confusing as that is traditionally used to show a cited reference in journal publications and not a species authorship and date. Genus+species+author+date (with parentheses as needed) is a (nearly) unique code or formula to define every species [2 known exceptions]. So you will find no comma between the author and date. Some journals are now treating species in this way.

Figures: Under a new species heading, some journals list (a) only the major figure, some list (b) all figures (including maps, habitats and graphs), and (c) some give figures showing the full view and any illustrated parts of the species. We give all figures that show a full view and any anatomical part of the species, so our listing of figures often differs from the treatment by a journal in the original description (as listed in the species heading).

Type localities: We give a current place name that one will find on a Google search or in an ‘English’ atlas. For some species described many years ago, one may find both the original locality and in parentheses a modern name for that locality. Many collections now have their holdings on-line, and it is there one can usually find the actual original locality if needed. Current localities are often augmented by additional information, such as coordinates.

Authors: We have added initials in brackets to distinguish all individual authors of genera and species.

Other sections

Genera/Species of Fishes by Family/Subfamily -- Total valid taxa reflect new taxa added minus taxa moved into synonymy plus taxa newly moved to valid. The classification is as used in Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes. Prepared by Bill Eschmeyer and Jon Fong, with modifications by Richard Van der Laan.

Family-Group Names -- Priority applies to Family-group names. It did not in early years. As classifications are refined with use of more subfamilies and tribes, it is required to use the oldest available family-group name for these new taxa.

Ichthyological Collections -- Presented are those specimen collections mentioned in the main Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes database, especially as repositories of type specimens. Besides museum names and abbreviations, this includes WWW sites, cross-referencing of abbreviations, and selection of museums by country, along with type catalogs, historical articles, name changes, transfers, and other items for individual collections. Prepared by Ron Fricke and Bill Eschmeyer.

Ichthyological Journals -- There are nearly 2600 individual journals or monograph series in Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes database. We provide full citations, and other information such as changes in titles, published duration, ISSN numbers, WWW sites, etc. Prepared by Ron Fricke and Bill Eschmeyer.


Acknowledgments for Ron Fricke (2020 and Jan. 2021): Arturo Acero P., Henry Agudelo-Zamora, Alfonso Aguilar-Perera, Hugo Aguirre, Harald Ahnelt, K. V. Akhilesh, Armando Almeida, Ricardo Alvarez-León, Pedro Amorim, Marcelo Andrade, Arturo Angulo, Leandro Araujo Argolo, Juan Carlos Arronte, Juan Miguel Artigas Azas, Muthukumarasamy Arunachalam, Claudio Baigun, Nicolas Bailly, Francisco Baldó, Arcady Balushkin, Rafael Bañon Díaz, Clyde Barbour, Filippo Bargnesi, Esra Bayçelebi, Edgar Eduardo Becerril-García, Yusuf Bektaş, Ricardo Benine, Ricardo Betancour, Maria Bichuette, Alessandro Bifi, José Birindelli, Pedro Bittencourt, Renan Borges dos Reis, José Carlos Brito, Ralf Britz, Heiko Brunken, Ivana Buj, Christian Capapé, Emily Capuli, Tiago Pinto Carvalho, Romain Causse, Hasan Cerim, Ning Labbish Chao, Junior Chuctaya, Patrick Ciccotto, Erdogan Çiçek, Kendall Clements, Topiltzin Contreras-MacBeath, Courtney Cox, Gabriel Cruz Ruíz, Fernando Dagosta, Neelesh Dahanukar, Chang-Feng Dai, Caio Dallevo-Gomes, Gabriel Deprá, Fabio Di Dario, Ignacio Doadrio, Omar Domínguez-Domínguez, Carlos DoNascimiento, Du Jianguo, Yury Dyldin, Siegfried Ehrich, Fernando Elloriaga-Verplancken, Hiromitsu Endo, Marco Endruweit, Deniz Ergüden, Maria Doris Escobar L., Hamid Esmaeili, Héctor Espinosa, Sergei Evseenko, Dario Faustino-Fuster, Juliano Ferrer, Daniel Figueroa, Lloyd Findley, Matthew Ford, Thomas Fraser, João Eduardo Pereira de Freitas, Augusto Frota, Dario Faustino Fuster, Cyril Gallot, Carolina Galván-Tirado, Julio Cesar Garavello, Mehdi Ghanbarifardi, Caio Gomes, Weferson da Graça, Steven Grant, Ana Fabiola Guzmán, Lorenzo Halasan, Gustavo Hallwass, Mohamed Eusuf Hasan, Philip Hastings, Harutaka Hata, Majid Hesni, Wen-Chien Huang, Samuel Iglésias, Muhammad Iqbal, Isaäc Isbrücker, Yukio Iwatsuki, Laith Jawad, Howard Jelks, Jeff Johnson, Wilbert Kadye, Thodoros Kampouris, K. Karuppasamy, Axel Katz, Cüneyt Kaya, Seishi Kimura, Jeff Kinch, Periklis Kleitou, Keita Koeda, Stefan Koerber, Matthew Kolmann, Laishram Kosygin, Philippe Koubbi, Aneesh Kumar, Taiga Kunishima, Enrique Laaz Moncayo, Thomas Lachenal, Felipe Lamarca, Anton Lamboj, Helen Larson, Sébastien Lavoué, Omar Mejía, Mario La Mesa, Djiman Lederoun, Boris Levin, Fan Li, Thomas Litz, Philip Lobel, Douglas Lopes, Hernán López-Fernández, Milton Love, Nathan Lujan, Diego Luzzatto, Luiz Malabarba, Katemo Manda, Alexandre Marceniuk, Stefano Mariani, Pablo Martín-Sosa, Mayler Martins, Wilfredo Matamoros, Mizuki Matsunuma, George Mattox, Bruno Melo, Naercio Menezes, Ernst Mikschi, Michael Mincarone, Rafael Miranda, Juan Marcos Mirande, Anil Mohapatra, Glenn Moore, Luis Fernando del Moral Flores, David Morgan, Clóvis da Motta-Neto, Béla Nagy, Muddula Krishna Naranji, Mikhail Nazarkin, Heok Hee Ng, Jørgen Nielsen, Chrysoula Ntislidou, Makoto Okamoto, Renildo Ribeiro de Oliveira, Alexey Orlov, Luz Orrego, Felipe Ottoni, Bayram Öztürk, Lawrence Page, Kodeeswaran Paramasivam, Annam Pavan, Edson Pereira, Tiago Pessali, Fávia Petean, Rohan Pethiyagoda, Kyle Piller, John Pogonoski, Gianluca Polgar, Jürgen Pollerspöck, Stuart Poss, Kante Prasad, Artem Prokofiev, Francisco Provenzano, Patrice Pruvost, Peter Psomadakis, Praveen Raj, Francisco Reiner, Roberto Esser dos Reis, Vinícius Reis, Ross Robertson, V. I. Romanov, Ricardo Rosa, Gorgonio Ruiz-Campos, Barry Russell, Ana Sabatés, Shilpi Saha, Sandhya Sakumaran, Luisa Sarmento-Soares, Christopher Scharpf, Erwin Schraml, Hiroshi Senou, Bernard Séret, Ilia Shakhovskoy, Bungdon Shangningam, Boris Sheiko, Vladimir Shelekhov, Brian Sidlauskas, Cárlison Silva-Oliveira, Tamaki Shimose, David Smith, Abilio Soares-Gomes, Ronaldo Sousa, Carla Sousa-Santos, Hiranya Sudasinghe, Sho Tanaka, Kisekelwa Tchalondawa, Tulio Teixeira, Eric Thomas, Andrea Thomaz, Francesco Tiralongo, Amira Touil, Franz Uiblein, Nguyen Quan Van, Ekaterina Vasil'eva, Diego Vaz, Frans Vermeulen, Sarah Viana, Thomas Vigliotta, Elena Voronina, Nathan Vranken, Emmanuel Vrewen, Maximilian Wagner, Gina Walsh, Simon Weigmann, Peter Wirtz, Baran Yoğurtçuoğlu, Henry Zamora, Angela Zanata, Jouke van de Zee, E Zhang, Yahui Zhao, Wei Zhou, Mikhail Zhukov, Gerardo Zúñiga.

Acknowledgments for Richard van der Laan (2020): Felipe Abranches, Emmanuel Abwe, Erik Åhlander, Henry Agudelo-Zamora, Carlos Ardila Rodríguez, Muthukumarasamy Arunachalam, Nicolas Bailly, Arcady Balushkin, Yusuf Bektas, Ricardo Betancur, Pedro Bragança, José Carlos Brito, Marko Ćaleta, Pablo Calviño, David Černý, Brian Coad, Sebastián Cona, Kevin Conway, Neelesh Dahanukar, Fabio di Dario, Vahe Demirjian, Gaël Denys, Eddy Derijst, Omar Domínguez-Domínguez, Laura Donin, Dario Faustino-Fuster, Antonia Ford, Acacio Freitas, Jörg Freyhof, Dan Fromm, Augusto Frota, Babette van Gool, Harutaka Hata, Elaine Heemstra, Hans Ho, Jean Huber, Taiki Ito, Praveenraj Jayasimhan, Axel Katz, Seishi Kimura, Steen Knudsen, Paul van der Laan, Francisco Langeani, Sébastien Lavoué, Mao-Ying Lee, Eliseo Lescún, Thomas Litz, Thiago Silva Loboda, Diego Luzzatto, James Maclaine, Katemo Manda, Mizuki Matsunuma, Madhava Meegaskumbura, Bruno Melo, Michal Mikšík, Guido Miranda, Marcos Mirande, Anil Mohapatra, Daniel Mokodongan, Peter Møller, Robert Myers, Dirk Neumann, Claudio Oliveira, Renildo de Oliveira, Larry Page, Murilo Pastana, Edson Pereira, Flávia Petean, Dennis Polack, Jayasimhan Praveenraj, Divya Radhakrishnan, Filipe Rangel-Pereira, Roberto Reis, Ross Robertson, Uwe Römer, Mark Sabaj, David de Santana, Mudjie Santos, Sérgio Santos, Luisa Sarmento-Soares, Chris Scharpf, Erwin Schraml, Hiroshi Senou, Bungdon Shangningam, Priscilla Caroline Silva, Dave Smith, Bill Smith-Vaniz, Gabe Somarriba, Hiranya Sudasinghe, John Sullivan, Milton Tan, Kisekelwa Tchalondawa, Andrea Thomaz, Tom Trnski, Massimiliano Virgilio, Olga Voskoboinikova, Nathan Vranken, Emmanuel Vreven, Simon Weigmann, Jeff Williams, Lei Yang, Jouke van der Zee, W. Zhou, Dan Zimberlin and Elsbeth Zwart.

Acknowledgments for Bill Eschmeyer (2020): Dave Catania, Richard van der Laan, Mikael Karlsson, John McCosker, Michael Miksik, Dirk Neumann, Rafaela Ota, Larry Page.

Search Instructions:

A search expression can be specified as

  • A single search term
    • a word
    • a phrase (multiple words) enclosed in double quotes – ["Jordan & Evermann"]
    • a partial word or phrase enclosed in double quotes (") and ending with an asterisk (*) – ["Hawai*"]
  • Two (or more) search terms joined by one of three logical operators: { and | or | and not }
    (terms can be grouped by using parentheses - see examples below).

Some examples of search expressions and the number of hits when that query is issued against the indicated database.

Example of
Search Expression
single word
"valid as Albula vulpes"
"synonym of Albula vulpes"
"Comoro Is"
x and y
Cuvier and Valenciennes
x or y
Cuvier or Valenciennes
x and not y
Salmo and not Salmonidae
Salmo and not Salmonidae and not Osmeridae
x and not (y or z)
Salmo and not (Salmonidae or Osmeridae)
wild card (*)
"Boo*" and not book

Technical feedback: