According to the National Wildlife Federation, flying fish live in the open waters of tropical and temperate oceans, including the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans. Flying fish live on a diet of plankton and grow up to 18 inches in length although they normally range between 7 and 12 inches.
Flying fish propel themselves as fast as 35 mph before leaving the water's surface in an effort to glide. Their highly modified pectoral fins act as wings as they cover as much as 650 feet in the air. It is believed that flight evolved as a defense mechanism against the flying fish's many predators.