Have you ever seen fish flying in the sea? Even the question makes a smile on our faces. Birds are born to fly, humans are capable of walking or running, the cheetah is an expert in running, and fish are well-known for swimming. So they can never fly. Then why the name flying fish? Actually, there exists a flying fish that can glide through the air. If you saw a school of fish with wings and gliding on air, most probably they were the flying fish. They jump out of water in the ocean.

Exocoetidae is the scientific name of flying fish. They grow up to the size of 18 inches. Some people call flying fish called flying cod.

Photo Credit: youtube.com

Features of flying fish

Where do flying fish live?

More than 40 species of flying fish are available at present. They belong to seven to 9 genera. Flying fish lives all over the equatorial and temperate zones that are flourished in warm water. Flying fish love to live in tropical and subtropical water of the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic oceans. You will find flying fish in the outskirts of coral reefs.


The mating season of flying fish lays when the ocean currents become weak. So the habitat of flying fish directly influences the mating cycle of this species. Most probably it latkes place during the period between spring and autumn. The female fish lay a huge amount of eggs close to the surface of the water. Those eggs are attached to the floating garbage or debris.

Young flying fish has a whisker near to the mouth. It is similar to underwater plants. The appearance of young fish helps to keep away dangers. So they can easily survive in the early ages after birth.

What do Flying Fish Eat?

Flying fish is a kind of omnivore animal. They feed on plankton and crustaceans. Normally, they have food at night.

How do flying fish communicate?

Fish communicate with each other just like other animals. Normally fish use gestures and vibrations for communications. Flying fish also communicate in the same way as other fish varieties.


Flying fish is a hunt for Fishermen in Japan, China, and Vietnam. India and Indonesia are also famous for hunting flying fish. It is found in Japanese cuisines. The dried fish is used as fish stock for dashi broth. Japanese flying fish is taken to prepare famous sushi called tobico. The taste of flying fish is quite similar to the taste of sardine.

Interesting facts about the flying fish

There are lots of interesting facts about flying fish. Let’s check out some engaging, fun, and interesting facts about this fish variety.

Flying fish has several colors

The shape of the flying fish is very much similar to the shape of a torpedo. The upper side of the body is bluish-grey while the belly is grayish-silver in color. They have a forked tail. Normally, the lower part of the tail is longer when compared with the upper part.

Flying fish can’t fly

Flying fish is not a bird. So it does not have an inherent ability to fly. But they leap into the air and glide. The wings-like structure in their body helps glide. Some species of flying fish have pelvic fins that are similar to wings. So it looks likes two wings. These wings are stretched out while gliding on air. They are not useful in swimming. So the fish folds wings when swimming.

Flying fish has the ability to escape from predators

The ability to glide through the air help flying fish to escape from predators very easily. A flying fish can reach up to 200 meters in the air. Their glide distance is up to 655 feet before landing on water. They are long-distance travelers. The glide fish can travel about 1 312 feet without even getting a rest. So they can easily get rid of predator attacks. They can tactfully escape from predators like marlin, swordfish, mackerel, and Tuna while swimming. The sad story is, flying fish become prey for birds when they are gliding in the air.

Fry: Baby flying fish

Female or male flying fish don’t have specific names. But baby fish have a cute name. They are called fry. A Fry can fly when they become long in 2 inches.

The largest species of flying fish

There are several species of flying fish. The largest flying fish species belongs to California which is found in the pacific ocean. The California flying fish grows up to 45 cm in length  

They live in large schools

You can see large sets of flying fish glide in the air. Flying fish live as a collective group. It is a threat to the species as fishermen be able to catch a large number of flying fishes at a time. As these fish has big eyes, they are sensitive to light. So fishermen easily hunt them by using lights. Many flying fish are caught during the nighttime.

Flying fish are famous in some countries

Barbados is well-known as “the land of the flying fish”. The flying fish is a national symbol in the country. It is depicted as sculptures in fountains on coins. Barbados Tourism Authority uses flying fish as a part of their symbol. The Barbadian passport has actual artistic renditions and holograms of the flying fish.

The national cuisine of Barbados is also flying fish.

What is the conservation status of flying fish?

No conservation procedures are taken on behalf of flying fish. They are still not regarded as the animals in the red zone. But overfishing can cause the extinction of flying fish one day.

The animal world is filled with fascinating stories. No one thinks that fish can fly. But fish that glide in the air exist in the world. Though the flying fish are not still regarded as species facing threats for the life, we need to care about them too. Mother Nature gifts us creatures to make Earth beautiful and balance the ecosystem.

Royce Fletcher
I am a Business Management graduate from the University Of Staffordshire (UK) and a qualified personnel officer who completed the National Diploma of Training and Human Resource Development at the Institute of Personnel Management.Apart from my professional career in the field of HRM, I am also a freelance writer of web and business content.


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