; subclass Actinopterygii, order Perciformes)
A family of marine fish that have an elongate body tapering towards the tail, but a flat belly, a steep forehead, and, characteristically, a pair of chin barbels which are probably used as feelers. They are bottom-living fish, often with distinctive colour patterns. Mullus surmuletus (red mullet), 40 cm, of the eastern Atlantic has been a popular food fish at least since Roman times. There are about 55 species, mainly marine, distributed world-wide in warmer water.
Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences.