Mahi-Mahi (Dorado)

Mahi-Mahi (Dorado)

The dolphin fish is not a dolphin. Unlike dolphins, which are mammals, dolphin fish are a type of rayfinned fish. The dolphin fish most likely got its confusing common name because it was previously classified in the genus Dolfyn. It also has a melon-shaped head, much like that of a true dolphin. In the modern classification system, the fish belongs to the genus Coryphaena.

 

Fast Facts: Dolphin Fish

  • Scientific NameCoryphaena hippurus (common dolphin fish); Coryphaena equiselis (pompano dolphin fish)
  • Other Names: Dolphinfish, dolphin, mahi-mahi, dorado, pompano
  • Distinguishing Features: Brilliantly colored fish with single dorsal fin spanning the length of the body; males have protruding foreheads
  • Average Size: 1 meter in length and up to 40 kilograms (88 lb) weight
  • Diet: Carnivorous
  • Life Span: Up to 5 years, but usually less than 2 years
  • Habitat: Temperate, subtropical, and tropical oceans worldwide
  • Conservation Status: Least Concern
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Actinopterygii
  • Order: Perciformes
  • Family: Coryphaenidae
  • Fun Fact: The dolphin fish is a very fast swimmer, reaching speeds of nearly 60 mph.

Description

There are two species of dolphin fish. The common dolphin fish (also known as mahi-mahi or dorado) is C. hippurus. The other species of dolphin fish is C. equiselis, which is also known as the pompano dolphin fish.

 
Pompano dolphin fish are sometimes mistaken for juvenile common dolphin fish or mahi-mahi because they are small, reaching a maximum length of 127 centimeters (50 in). Pompano dolphin fish are bright blue-green with silver-gold sides. The fish fade in color to dull gray-green when they die.
 

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