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15 Fish With Big Eyes: A Complete List

There are hundreds of land creatures that have large eyes. But what about the fish with big eyes? A pair of eyes is just as critical to full-time marine animals as it is for animals on the land and much more so to fishes in particular. Since the existence of light is required for seeing but do you think that is the only reason?

Light from the top scarcely reaches depths 3,000 feet below the water. At 650 feet, a significant quantity of light permeates the ocean. So, fish must survive at this stage with little or no light. To that end, several bodily components have been changed to allow vision in low light. As a result, the eyes became bigger than usual.

Let’s look at a few of these fish with big eyes.

Fish With Big Eyes

1. Swordfish


Scientific name: Xiphias gladius.
Life expectancy: Almost around 9 years or more.

Swordfish has a long, much flattened snout that resembles a sword, thus its name. Their bodies are flat and round, and their eyes are large.

Swordfish are frequently featured in bizarre cartoons because of their long sword-like bill, which they use to catch their prey. But don’t be fooled. A swordfish also has some remarkable qualities. The swordfish has specific tissues that can protect its brain from variations in water temperature, and it has some of the largest eyes in the sea.

The eyeballs of a swordfish are around the size of softballs, far larger than a human’s! The same tissues that protect the swordfish’s brain also warm the eyeballs, protecting the swordfish’s eyesight and central nervous system from difficulties that may occur in extremely cold water.

They also have large mouths and little brains and prefer cold water. In addition, they have a pair of barbels, which are short whiskers. These whiskers aid them in swiftly locating food.

Expert Tip: Swordfish may be found in tropical waters worldwide, from the enormous Indian Ocean to the remote Pacific Ocean. It’s important to know that these fish can only be found in depths ranging from 100 to 1,500 meters.

2. Rockfish


Scientific name: Sebastes.
Life expectancy: Around 11 to 200 years.

Rockfish come in very different colors, such as yellow, orange, red, dark green, and black. These fish have a brownish body with a pale belly tinted with orange or pink. Each side of the rockfish’s lower jaw has three pores and two black streaks on each cheek.

Rockfish have enormous eyes, lengthy tails, and massive ears. The bodies of rockfish are long, and the heads are short. These Fish are among the most common marine species found across the planet.

Their eyes are on top of their heads and resemble two black circles. They are mostly utilized for night vision and hunting prey. When it’s underwater, its eyes seem to be the regular size for its body. When the rockfish reaches the surface, its eyes enlarge and seem gigantic, like a giant pair of binoculars.

To help it float, this fish possesses a swim bladder that fills with gas. When the fish is underwater, the pressure in the swim bladder equals the water pressure. However, as the rockfish emerges from the water, the pressure of the gas inside the bladder exceeds the air pressure, causing the fish’s eyes to enlarge and pop out.

They eat various foods, including Pacific herring, shrimp, crabs, surfperch, and amphipods. However, there are around 130 species of these fish, most of which are hazardous to pets and people owing to their poisonous spines.

3. Genie’ Dogfish

Genie' Dogfish
Genie’ Dogfish

Scientific name: Squalus clarkae.
Life expectancy: Average of 20 to 24 years.

Dogfish sharks are adorable, big-eyed dogfish shark species with thin bodies and somewhat flattened skulls. Genie’s Dogfish have large, wide eyes and a mouth full of sharp teeth. This fish has one of the greatest visions of any fish species.

Unlike other fish with poor night vision, Genie’s Dogfish can perceive various colors, motions, forms, and details. Their eyes are sensitive to light, which helps them navigate through murky waters.

These fish eat mostly herring, shrimp, squids, and crabs. Larger shark species, such as larger killer whales, Spiny Dogfish, seals, and so on. Feast on them.

4. Spotted Redfish

Spotted Redfish
Spotted Redfish

Scientific name: Hydrolagus colliei.
Life expectancy: 16 years for males and 21 years for females.

The Spotted ratfish is more like a chimera, a type of cartilaginous fish related to sharks and rays but classified as a separate taxonomic family. Ratfish derive their name from long, pointed tails resembling rat tails.

The obvious spots, rodent-like tail, and wide, reflecting eyes distinguish spotted ratfish from other fish. Spotted ratfish are among the fishes with large eyes, short jaws, and long snouts. Their bodies are coated with patches, which help them blend in with their surroundings.

Their color also helps them hide from predators like sharks and other larger fish. These fish have two huge eyes on their heads and may be found in tropical seas worldwide. The spotted ratfish prefer places near rocky coastlines and coral reefs.

Expert Tip: These fishes are also generalist predators that devour a variety of benthic invertebrates and fishes. They may also use their dorsal fins to inflict slight poisonous wounds on humans.

5. Blue Sharks

Blue Sharks
Blue Sharks

Scientific name: Prionace glauca.
Life expectancy: Around 20 years or more.

Blue sharks are gigantic predators that may grow up to 13 feet long but are usually closer to 10 feet long. These fish have a deep blue dorsal hue that fades to pale blue on either side and white on the belly. Blue sharks have thin bodies, cone-shaped snouts, and big eyes.

These fish live in tropical seas and consume shrimp, crabs, octopuses, squids, and other tiny fish. These Fish are top predators in the water and consume other fish. Blue sharks have big eyes that they utilize to detect movement in the water, allowing them to swiftly locate their food from a distance.

These fish tend to graze on invertebrates and tiny fish in shallow coastal waters. These fish tend to graze on invertebrates and tiny fish in shallow coastal waters.

6. Horse-eye jack

Horse-eye jack
Horse-eye jack

Scientific name: Caranx latus.
Life expectancy: Around 25 to 30 years.

The mature horse-eye jack is silvery blue to dark blue on top and silvery-white to golden below. Individuals with soft dorsal fin lobes and dark blue to black scutes exist. The caranx latus, often known as the horse-eye jack, is a giant fish with enormous eyes.

These eyes are unique because they have adipose eyelids. An adipose eyelid is known as a translucent membrane that covers the fish’s eye, allowing it to see better underwater.

These huge fish may weigh up to 30 pounds or more. In Panama, these Fish are considered game fish, making them popular among fishermen. They have excellent vision and prefer to live in shallow water where they can easily spot predators. This allows them to flee danger as soon as they perceive it.

7. Pufferfish


Scientific name: Tetraodontidae
Life expectancy: Around 10 years or less.

Pufferfish are categorized into 29 genera and include at least 200 species. Because they are such durable and resilient fish, they can easily adapt to any environment. Pufferfish are well-known for blowing up when startled.

However, they have huge eyes, which aids in their excellent vision. Their big eyes aid in the detection of prey and the avoidance of harmful predators.

When terrified, these tiny fish would take in a large amount of water and puff out to double their normal size. This makes them look larger and scarier to predators but also causes them to swim slower. But don’t be too concerned about these crazy fish.

These creatures are also known as blowfish, globefish, and fugu. These names are derived from their remarkable capacity to drink water and expand to more than double their normal size.

These fish may be found across the world’s warm climates. Most varieties like to dwell in quiet regions with lots of shelters, whether they favor saltwater or freshwater. This often refers to coral reefs, reed-covered wetlands, and other areas where water and flora meet.

However, one of the fun facts about puffer fish a single pufferfish has enough venom to kill up to 30 humans.

8. Squirrel fish

Squirrel fish
Squirrel fish

Scientific name: Holocentridae.
Life expectancy: Around 2 to 4 years maximum.

Squirrelfish are fishes that live in the tropics. Their fins are rough and spiky, with thorny scales. Some have a pointed spine with different white, yellow, or black patterns on their cheekbones. Squirrelfish have brightly colored bodies that generally glisten and unequally huge, black eyes.

These fishes also have lighter-colored bellies that help them blend in with their environment when viewed under the surface. Squirrel fishes have enormous eyes that let them see considerably better at night.

Interestingly, these large-eyed fish are predominantly nocturnal. Thus their large eyes help them seek and battle predators at night. These fishes have two sets of eyes, one for seeing above the water and one for looking below. This ability allows them to view what’s happening above and below the sea. Isn’t that amazing?

They are also known as fishes that also have a fantastic sense of taste and smell. Carnivores eat crustaceans like crabs and shrimp, snakes and brittle stars, marine worms, and other invertebrates.

Expert Tip: This species may be maintained as a pet. However, even if you keep these fish in a well-lighted aquarium, you won’t see them very often. This is owing to their nocturnal nature, which causes them to conceal and only come out when it is dark.

9. Barracudas


Scientific name: Sphyraena.
Life expectancy: Around 14 years or more.

Barracuda has a fearsome reputation for being frightening and terrifying fish due to their enormous, pointed fangs that protrude from their mouth. In truth, they are shy and terrified of people. They also have rather big eyes, which they employ while hiding about coral reefs.

Barracudas resemble snakes and have strong fang-like teeth similar to piranhas. These fish have big jaws, pointed heads, spineless gills, and short scales. These strong teeth and large snouts allow them to grab and eat shrimp, small fish, and crabs.

Barracudas are one of several fish with large eyes on their heads that they utilize to seek their prey and allow them to see underwater. They have two huge black eyes that are particularly sensitive to the reflected light, they may identify prey by glinting from areas of their body that reflect light.

These fish may make excellent pets if properly cared for. It’s best to conduct some study on this species before obtaining one as a pet.

10. Tarpon


Scientific name: Megalops.
Life expectancy: Around 50 years maximum.

Tarpons come in two varieties, both of which are spectacular game fish known for putting up a fight when hooked up to a fishing line.

They are enormous fish with large, glossy, half-dollar scales covering their flanks and a bright, lustrous hue that flashes and glows in the sunshine. It’s no surprise that they have huge eyes. They have lengthy bodies, large pelvic fins, and extended pectoral fins.

They consume almost any sort of fish, including dead ones. These Fish are endemic to South America and Florida and often reside in freshwater environments such as lakes and rivers.

They are also the world’s largest saltwater gamefish. Has a diverse diet that includes shrimp, small fish, crabs, and other crustaceans. Rays and smaller sharks are also one of their prey.

11. Bigeye Fish

Bigeye Fish
Bigeye Fish

Scientific name: Priacanthus macracanthus
Life expectancy: 9 years or less.

The bigeye fish is a member of the Priacanthidae family, which includes about 50 tiny, deep-water fish species. These Fish are commonly found in tropical regions worldwide, including the Indian and Pacific Oceans. They live on the seafloor and eat crustaceans, mollusks, and other tiny invertebrates.

Bigeye fishes are often brilliant red in color, however, most species can range from a faint tint to a deep, speckled hue. This fish family contains some of the world’s biggest fish species.

These fish are mostly nocturnal predators. However, some have been observed active during the day. Young bigeye fishes eat crustaceans such as decapods and euphausiids, whereas adults eat fish, juveniles, and larvae.

12. Telescope goldfish

Telescope goldfish
Telescope goldfish

Scientific name: Carassius auratus auratus.
Life expectancy: Around 6 to 25 years maximum.

The telescope eye is a goldfish distinguished by its projecting eyeballs. It was initially developed in China in the early 1700s, where this characteristic was known as dragon eyes.

Expert Tip: These telescope goldfish are known for their exceptionally curious fish behavior and large, spherical eyes that let them see well in dirty surroundings. They also have a large mouth for swallowing food.

These fish enjoy a variety of frozen, fresh, and flake meals. It is also beneficial to treat those using daphnia. brine shrimp, tubifex worms, and blood worms.

13. Porbeagle Shark

Porbeagle Shark
Porbeagle Shark

Scientific name: Lamna nasus.
Life expectancy: Around 30 years maximum.

Porbeagles are spindly-shaped, strong sharks. Their blue-gray bodies and pale stomach patches distinguish them. They also have distinctive blue-gray dorsal fins with a white patch at the base. Porbeagle sharks have large eyes that come in handy while seeking food. Furthermore, they have big teeth that allow them to effortlessly grab prey.

Porbeagle sharks also have two rows of massive, round lenses known as eyeballs, allowing them to see clearly underwater and detect prey from a distance of one kilometer.

These fish have the unusual ability to detect electromagnetic fields, which allows them to hunt at night. These fish may be found in the Atlantic Ocean from Brazil to North Carolina.

When these sharks reach maturity, they typically feed on mackerel, hake, cod, herring, and dogfish. They do not feed on other aquatic animals, unlike their bigger relatives in the white shark family.

14. Thresher sharks

Thresher sharks
Thresher sharks

Scientific name: Alopias superciliosus.
Life expectancy: Around 20 years maximum.

Thresher sharks have enormous eyes, large pectoral fins, tiny jaws, first pelvic fins, and a dorsal fin. In addition, they have a tiny secondary dorsal fin near their tails and anal fins.
The thresher shark is a massive shark that is usually considered harmless. However, due to the thresher shark’s large size, it is still advised to avoid these fish species.

These sharks may reach a maximum length of 20 feet. These sharks are sometimes seen leaping out of the water and are occasionally confused with other marine creatures. The bigeye thresher eats pelagic and benthic species, including tuna, hake, immature billfish, and herring. They can also eat a variety of crabs and squids.

15. Bigeye Tuna

Bigeye Tuna
Bigeye Tuna

Scientific name: Thunnus obesus.
Life expectancy: Around 30 years maximum.

The bigeye tuna is one of the biggest tuna species, reaching heights of 8 feet and weighing up to 190 to 210 kilograms. Their backs are dark blue to black, with white lower sides and bellies.

Bigeye tuna may be found between 1,500 to 4,000 meters deep in the Pacific Ocean. They have big eyes that encompass about half of their heads. They reside at depths ranging from 500 to 2,000 meters and feed on tiny fish such as sardines, anchovies, mackerels, squids, herring, and crustaceans.

The Bottom Line

Fish are beautiful creatures, well, of course, except for the ones that are scary and poisonous. You may always refer to this guide if you seek ish with large eyes and their characteristics. Let us know in the comment section if you have any other queries regarding this.

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About Ava Wellington

Hi, my name is Ava and I am a editor for GuideYourPet. I love pets, and am the owner of 2 horses and 2 dogs! I have loved pets all my life, and have owned everything from bearded dragons to snakes! I am excited to help you take the best care of your pet!