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Species: Ophioscion panamensis, Panama croaker

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

fins black
preopercle 8-9 small spines
D 19-21
gill rakers 6-7 + 11-14
A 6-7, 2nd spine thick, long
LL 47-49

Ophioscion panamensis Schultz 1945

Panama croaker

Body oblong, robust, with humped back; head low and short, cavernous but firm to touch on top; snout slightly overhangs small, horizontal mouth; teeth on lower jaw simple, in bands; chin without barbel; snout with 8 pores; chin with 3 pairs of pores (inner pair minute, in a depression); gill rakers 6-7 + 11-14, short; preopercle with 8-9 small spines; top corner of gill opening notched; dorsal rays X + I, 19-21; pelvic fins with filamentous first ray; anal rays II, 6-7, 2nd spine stout and long; pectoral fin 22-23% SL; tail fin long, bluntly pointed; scales on body and all or most of head rough; soft dorsal and anal fins with 1-2 rows of scales along their bases and small scales on membranes for 3/4 distance from base; the lateral line extends to the center of the end of the tail fin; lateral line pores 47-49

Color (preserved fish) brown; fins blackish, with first spine of each white; filamentous pelvic rays white; lining of stomach cavity white.

Size: grows to 25 cm.

Inhabits brackish coastal waters  on sandy mud bottoms, especially around beaches.

Depth: 1-20 m.

Known only from the around the Caribbean entrance to the Panama Canal.

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  • Brackish
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom only
  • Mud
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Estuary
  • Beach
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic worms
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
  • All species.
Regional Endemism
  • All species..
  • Continent only
  • GC endemic
  • Caribbean endemic
  • Continent
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 25
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 20