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Species: Zenopsis conchifer, Buckler Dory, Silver John Dory

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

oval, v compressed
D IX-X, spines long, flexible
D & A base: (7 & 5-6) large bony scutes
chest narrow
mouth large, v protrusible
belly: 2 rows 7-8 large bony scutes



Zenopsis conchifer (Lowe, 1852)

Buckler Dory, Silver John Dory

Body oval, its depth > head length; head and body greatly compressed; head bones thin and soft; mouth large, oblique, upper jaw extremely protrusible, top jaw bone widely expanded at rear; jaws with a few minute conical teeth; chest narrow; dorsal fin IX-X (long, flexible), 24-30; anal fin III, 24-30, a locking mechanism between first 2 spines; pectoral fin 12-14, much shorter than head or pelvic fins; pelvics I, 5, origin before pectoral origin; tail fin rounded; scales absent; a series of large bony bucklers along base of dorsal and anal fins; 2 rows of 6-7 large keeled scutes between pelvic fins and anus, 2 bucklers before pelvics.

Silvery, with a dark spot on mid-side just behind and above tip of pectoral.

Reaches 90 cm.

Over soft and hard bottoms.

Depth range: 90-600 m.

Both sides of the Atlantic and the W Indian Ocean; Maine to Brazil.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Mid Water
  • Near Bottom
  • Rocks
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Water column
  • Corals
  • Mud
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Bentho-Pelagic
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Zooplankton
  • Bony fishes
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans)
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Extends North of GC
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 90
Depth Range Min
  • 90
Depth Range Max
  • 600