Image by Brian Gratwicke on Flickr, CC BY 2.
Physical: The spotfin mojarra is a silver fish with large rough scales and a pointed snout. They can extend their mouth out from their body. They have dusky tips on their dorsal (back) fin spines and a deeply forked tail. Adults grow up to around 6 in (15 cm).
Habitat: Their range spans from New Jersey to Bermuda, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean, and onward south to Brazil. They are also found in the Pacific, in the Galapagos Islands, and from southern California to Peru. The Barnegat Bay is at the northern extreme of their range, so most individuals found here will be southern strays. They prefer soft bottom bays and shallow inshore areas. Juveniles live in lagoons and mangroves.
Feeding: As bottom feeders, they feed on clams, crustaceans (shrimps), and worms. Their mouth extends downward into the sediment to look for prey.
Breeding: Not much is known about the spofin mojarra’s breeding behavior. A study in Brazil placed it between summer and fall (December to June, in the southern hemisphere).
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