This order contains seven families, 29 genera and about 144 species (Nelson 2006). Information about the order has been summarised by Kotlyar (1996). The classification and relationships of the group have been studied extensively, but no consensus has been reached. Major works include Stiassny (1986), Patterson & Rosen (1989), Stiassny & Moore (1992) and Johnson & Patterson (1993). Species are generally pelagic and occur in a variety of marine habitats from coral reefs to deeper parts of the ocean.
Johnson, G.D. & Patterson, C. 1993. Percomorph phylogeny: a survey of acanthomorphs and a new proposal. Bulletin of Marine Science 52(1): 554-626
Kotlyar, A.N. 1996. Beryciform Fishes of the World Ocean. Moscow : VNIRO Publishing 368 pp.
Nelson, J.S. 2006. Fishes of the World. Hoboken, New Jersey : John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 601 pp.
Patterson, C. & Rosen, D.E. 1989. The Paracanthopterygii revisited: order and disorder. 5-36 in Cohen, D.M. (ed.). Papers on the systematics of gadiform fishes. Science Series. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County 32: 1-262
Stiassny, M.L.J. 1986. The limits and relationships of the acanthomorph teleosts. Journal of Zoology, London B 1: 411-460
Stiassny, M.L.J. & Moore, J.A. 1992. A review of the pelvic girdle of acanthomorph fishes, with comments on hypotheses of acanthomorph intrarelationships. Journal of the Linnean Society of London, Zoology 104: 209-242