Lampreys are any jawless fish of the order Petromyzontiformes. The adult lamprey may be characterized by a toothed, funnel-like sucking mouth.
The common name “lamprey” is probably derived from Latin lampetra which mean “stone licker”. Currently there are about 38 known extant species of lampreys. They are well known for boring into the flesh of other fish to suck their blood.
These fishes are 13 to 100 cm long. Lampreys live mostly in coastal and fresh waters. Some species are found in land-locked lakes. Lampreys have long been used as food for humans. They were highly appreciated by ancient Romans.