(Chanos chanos), silvery marine food fish that is the only living member of the family Chanidae (order Gonorhynchiformes). Fossils of this fish date from as far back as the Cretaceous Period (144 to 66.4 million years ago). The milkfish is often collected when young and raised for food in brackish or freshwater tropical ponds. It is a toothless herbivore 1 to 1.5 m (3 to 5 feet) or more in length with a deeply forked tail. It is found throughout warmer regions of the Pacific and Indian oceans and can withstand very shallow, warm (88 F [31 C]) lagoon water. From March to May, it lays up to several million eggs in shallow, brackish water.
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