Tropical Fish Word of the Day: Lateral line

Expand your tropical fish vocabulary with the Tropical Fish Word of the Day.

Lateral line (n.) – The sensory organ called the lateral line, which is located on either side of fish running from the head to the base of the tail, is a row of individual sensors that fish use to detect pressure changes in the water. There are pores that make up the lateral line, and these pores are filled with a jellylike substance and hairlike cells that detect the movement in the water. It is similar to the vertebrate inner ear. Lateral lines help fish to “see” their surroundings, such as aquarium decor, other fish, etc.

Aquarium fish, especially saltwater surgeonfishes and angelfishes, are susceptible to a disease called head and lateral line erosion.

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