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Species: Trinectes microphthalmus, Smalleye Sole

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

fine, dense reticulating dark lines
C pale + dark edge
D 45-54; A 32-40
eye tiny ( < 40% snout)
no pectorals

Trinectes microphthalmus (Chabanaud, 1928)

Smalleye Sole

Body oval; eyes on right side, tiny, 33-40% of snout length; head short and deep; front margin of head with short tentacles; snout rounded; mouth small, oblique, a little under snout; lips fleshy; rear edge of preopercle covered with skin, visible as a superficial groove; gill openings wide, united before pelvic fins; without opening connecting gill chambers on both sides; dorsal 45-54 rays, origin above lower eye; anal rays 32-40; no pectoral fins; pelvic fin on eye side fused to anal; lateral line from head to tail, straight, with perpendicular branches running across body; body covered with rough scales; scales on front of head enlarged, 4-5 rows on preopercle, 8-10 rows on opercle.

Color of preserved fish; upper surface yellowish, with fine dense reticulating brown lines; tail fin pale, edge dark; lower surface white.

Size: to 9 cm.

Habitat: brackish lagoons (main habitat) to coastal marine conditions.

Depth: 1-30 m?

Trinidad and Tobago to SE Brazil.

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  • Brackish
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Estuary
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • 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
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 9
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 30