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Species: Xenolepidichthys dalgleishi, Spotted tinselfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

adult: diamond shape
C short, blunt
juv: body - no spiny scutes
juv: body - black spots; A no bars
D: 32-35, base - 29 spines

Xenolepidichthys dalgleishi Gilchrist, 1922

Spotted tinselfish

Body diamond-shaped, strongly compressed; body depth much greater than head length, 80-120% of SL; eyes large; head bones soft and thin; mouth minute, top jaw length ½ of eye diameter; jaws with a few minute conical teeth, none on roof of mouth; soft rays of dorsal, anal and pectoral unbranched; dorsal fin V + 27-30, 1st spine large, robust and serrated in adult, 1st 2 spines greatly elongated in juvenile; a row of 29 small spines along each side of dorsal & anal fin bases; anal fin II + 27-35, 1st spine greatly elongated in juvenile, elongated, strong and serrated in adult; pectoral fin 14-15 rays, much shorter than head; pelvics I, 6; 29 small spiny scutes along dorsal fin base, 26-27 along anal fin base: scales are vertically elongated, over most of head and body; tail fin short, blunt, 13 branched rays.

Violet blue above, silvery below; body with scattered round, pupil sized black spots that are more obvious in juveniles; front of pelvics and rear edge of tail fin black.

Reaches 15 cm.

Over deep reefs, usually near bottom.

Depth range: 90-885 m.

W Atlantic, S Africa and the Indo-W Pacific; Nova Scotia to Suriname.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Near Bottom
  • Mid Water
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Water column
FishBase Habitat
  • Bentho-Pelagic
Feeding Group
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Zooplankton
  • Pelagic fish larvae
  • Pelagic fish eggs
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • All species.
  • Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans)
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Extends North of GC
  • Continent only
  • Extends South of GC
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Continent
  • All species..
  • GC non-endemic
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 15
Depth Range Min
  • 90
Depth Range Max
  • 885