Broad-Striped Anchovy

Anchoa hepsetus

Picture of a broad-striped anchovy
Image by Robert Aguilar, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center on Flickr, CC BY 2.0

Physical: The broad-striped anchovy is one of two anchovy species found in Barnegat Bay. It is a slim silver fish with a prominent, rounded snout, an overbite, and a long silver stripe alongside an otherwise translucent body. While it closely resembles the more common bay anchovy, broad-striped anchovy grow slightly larger to 6 in (15 cm). Their dorsal fin also sits further up the body, with only the rear third overlapping the anal fin (compared to half of the dorsal fin overlapping the anal fin as in bay anchovy).

Habitat: Broad-striped anchovies live in near-shore environments. They can tolerate a wide range of salinities but are primarily a brackish and saltwater fish. Their range stretches from Massachusetts to Florida (except for the Florida Keys), into the northern Gulf of Mexico, and also from the Gulf of Venezuela down to Uruguay.

Feeding: Their diet consists of gastropods, worms, and other zooplankton. Juveniles feed mostly on copepods.

Breeding: Different populations spawn at different times of the year. Around New Jersey, the broad-striped anchovy spawns from June to August. Eggs are buoyant and transparent.

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