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Species: Eques punctatus, Spotted Drum

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

3 oblique bars + stripes
D, A & C spotted
D 45-47
juv: last bar - D to C, snout -oval spot, pectoral - black stripe
pectoral 17-18

Eques punctatus (Bloch & Schneider, 1801)

Spotted Drum

Body oblong, deep at front, tapering to a thin tail base; head low; snout overhangs horizontal mouth; teeth in villiform band, those in outer row of upper jaw slightly enlarged; chin with 5 pores, no barbels; snout with 10 pores; 15-18 short, stout gill rakers; preoperculum nearly smooth edged; top corner of gill opening notched; dorsal fin with long base, deep notch between spiny and soft parts, XII-XIV + I, 45-47, spiny part very high (longer than head); anal fin with short base, II, (2nd strong), 6; pectoral rays 17-18; tail fin with blunt angular point; lower half of second dorsal fin covered with a thick scale sheath; the lateral line extends to the center of the end of the tail fin.

Body white, with 3 broad, black oblique bars, 1 through eye, 1 from nape to pelvic fin and 1 from the 1st dorsal that angles back to form a stripe that runs to base of tail fin; upper back with 2 black stripes; 2nd dorsal fin and tail fin black with white spots. Small juveniles body white + 3 black bars, last bar through dorsal to tail fin; oval black spot on snout; pectoral fin with black stripe.

Maximum size to 25 cm.

Inhabits coastal reefs.

Depth: 4-105 m.

The Gulf of Mexico to Brazil.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Mobile benthic worms
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Extends South of GC
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 25
Depth Range Min
  • 4
Depth Range Max
  • 105