Search by Species

Many ways to find your fish

The following refers to the CD-ROM version of FishBase:

If you want to find information on a certain species, click on the Species button in the Main Menu. You can also select Species by Topic, to generate, e.g., a list of all species for which growth data are available. You are offered a choice to find your species by scientific or common name, or to pick it from a list of species within a family or within a country. You can also use our ‘Quick Identification’ routine.

After clicking on the Scientific name button you have the choice to either select the generic and specific names from alphabetic lists, or to enter the first few characters, in which case FishBase will automatically complete the names. To do the former, just click on the little arrow at the right side of the field. Note that once you have entered a generic name, the choices for specific names are limited to that genus. Clicking on the Find button brings you to the selected species. If there is more than one match for the name you have entered, a list of possible species will be displayed. Double-click on a row to go to the desired species.

FishBase makes use of special characters

If you click on the Common name button, you will be prompted to enter a vernacular name. Note that a wildcard (*) is automatically appended to your entry and FishBase also searches for the occurrence of the search term in subsequent words, e.g., a search for ‘cod’ will find ‘codlet’ and ‘cod goby’ as well as ‘Atlantic cod’. FishBase makes use of special characters available in Windows, i.e., common names may contain any of the following characters: à, á, ã, ä, å, æ, ç, è, é, ê, ë, ì, í, î, ï, ñ, ò, ó, ô, õ, ö, ø, ù, ú, û, ü, ß, etc. After clicking on the Find button FishBase displays matching common names together with the country where they are used and with the corresponding scientific name. Double-clicking on a name brings you to that species in the SPECIES table. Alternatively, you can click on the Browse button on the right of the field and select a name from the alphabetic lists. If you have entered a country and language, the list will be restricted to common names in that country and language. This feature allows you, for example, to find ‘Chinook’ (the language) in British Columbia, the province of Canada here treated as a ‘country’.

If you opted to search by Family, FishBase will offer you the choice of picking a family from a list or enter the first few characters to have matching names completed, as described above for scientific names. After you click on the List species button, FishBase will display a list of all available species in that family, in alphabetic order together with author and FishBase name. Double-clicking on any row will bring you to the corresponding record in the SPECIES table.

You can also select a species from a list of freshwater and/or marine fishes for a given Country. Again, double-click on any row to get to the SPECIES table.

SEARCH BY TOPIC shows the main data categories available in FishBase, and allows you to quickly find all species in a country, order or family for which such information is available.