A diverse group of mostly bentho- and bathypelagic fishes found worldwide. Gadiform fishes live in cool to cold water habitats ranging from the deep-sea to inshore coastal waters; two species live in freshwater. The group comprises 10 families and more than 600 species, including many commercially important cods, grenadiers and hakes. More than half the species belong to a single family, the Macrouridae, or grenadiers, the dominant benthopelagic fishes in deep slope waters of the world. Seven gadiform families occur in Australian waters.
Gadifom fishes have long-based dorsal and anal fins, pelvic fins (when present) usually inserted below or in front of the pectoral fins, mostly cycloid (smooth) scales and lack fin spines.
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