Flying Fish any of about 100 species of fish of the family Exocoetidae, order Beloniformes, which are able to make short gliding 'flights' over the surface of the sea. The family includes both four-winged and two-winged forms, depending on whether the pelvic fins are enlarged in addition to the pectoral fins. These mostly marine flying fishes accomplish their extraordinary gliding flights by swimming rapidly at the surface and oscillating the extended lower lobe of the tail fin to provide lift and thrust.
When the body is out of the water, the paired fins are spread out like wings and the fish lifts clear of the surface. Depending on wind the fish may remain airborne for about 30 seconds, reaching a height of 10 m and covering a distance of about 400 m.
For this reason flying fishes sometimes crash on to the decks of ships. They occur in all warm seas. The length of the fish may range from 10-30 cm. The 'flight' of the flying fishes is primarily a means to escape from predators, such as dolphins.
Bangladesh has 3 species of flying fishes. All are pelagic and are found in the bay of bengal. These are Exocoetus comatus, E. poecilopterus and E. volitans. [Selima Begum]