NOVA

Treasures of the Great Barrier Reef

Student Handout

Fish Sorting

Cut out each of the fish provided by your teacher, then follow your teacher's instructions for sorting the fish into categories.

Fish chart

Fish key

Step 1
If fish shape is long and skinny, then go to step 2
If fish shape is not long and skinny, then go to step 3

Step 2
If fish has pointed fins, it is a trumpet fish
If fish has smooth fins, it is a spotted moray eel

Step 3
If fish has both eyes on top of the head, then go to step 4
If fish has one eye on each side of the head, then go to step 5

Step 4
If fish has long whip-like tail, it is a spotted eagle ray
If fish has short, blunt tail, it is a peacock flounder

Step 5
If fish has spots, then go to step 6
If fish does not have spots, then go to step 7

Step 6
If fish has chin "whiskers," it is a spotted goat fish
If fish does not have chin "whiskers," it is a band-tail puffer

Step 7
If fish has stripes, then go to step 8
If fish does not have stripes, it is a glassy sweeper

Step 8
If fish has a v-shaped tail, it is a squirrel fish
If fish has a blunt tail, it is a glass-eye snapper




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