Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

Español  Contact

Species: Chilomycterus schoepfii, Striped Burrfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

head & body: many wavy longitudinal dark lines
back - 5-7 dark blotches
body + fins: no spots
spines few, short, immovable
juv: yellow + black lines, spines yellow

Chilomycterus schoepfii (Walbaum, 1792)

Striped Burrfish

Body rotund, can be inflated; head wide and blunt; eyes large; either no or a very small tentacle over eye; nasal organ a short, hollow tentacle with 2 openings; teeth fused into a strong, parrot-like beak with two plates that lack a front groove, large, opens widely at front; gill opening a vertical slit before pectoral base; pectorals large; fins without spines; tail fin with 9 (9-10) rays; no pelvic fins; body and head covered with relatively few, short (< eye), fixed, 3-rooted spines that are triangular and flattened in cross-section, and, in some cases reduced to plates under skin; no spines wholly on tail base. Juvenile with a large tentacle over eye.

Pale cream to grey with many roughly longitudinal thin dark lines on head and body; 5-7 large dark blotches on back; no black spots on body or fins. Juvenile: body with black lines on a yellow background, spines yellowish.

Size: grows to about 33 cm; the young lead a pelagic existence until about 1-2 cm.

Inhabits soft bottoms, seagrass beds, estuaries, lagoons; move to reefs in winter.

Depth: 0-92 m.

Nova Scotia to the NW Caribbean.

High Resolution Map Download

Species Data Create Report Export as Word File Export as Excel File
  • Brackish
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Submerged vegetation
  • Estuary
  • Mud
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Sea-stars/cucumbers/urchins
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Continental primarily
  • Extends North of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 33
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 92