Fistulariidae - cornetfishes

Cornetfishes are a family with long, tubular bodies with an extremely long snout and terminal small mouth. They are easily distinguished by the long filament extending from the middle of their small, forked tail. The filament is am extended fusion of the two middle tail rays. They are generally scaleless but may have tiny prickles or scutes. When they swim, their body undulates like a snake or eel. Propulsion is through the tail fin. Cornetfishes are voracious predators of small fish and crustaceans. They can rapidly change color to blend in with their surroundings. Found worldwide in tropical and subtropical seas, the family consists of a single genus and four species. Two species occur in the Gulf of Mexico.