Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Genus: Sciades, Sea catfish, Sea-Catfishes

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

rough part of head shield extends forwards
plate at base D spine large & wide
usually skin fold between rear nostrils
top jaw: side front bone concave
roof mouth - 2 pair tooth patches



Head broad; bony head shield very rough, granular; plate on nape between head shield and base of dorsal fin overlaps rear of head shield, increases in size with age, becoming large and broad in adults; 2 pairs of close-set nostrils, a transverse skin fold between rear nostrils (except in S parkeri and S proops); 3 pairs of barbels (on both jaws and chin), top barbells with very thick bases; side of premaxilla (front bone of top jaw) concave; roof of  mouth with two pairs of patches of conical teeth, front pair fused centrally and almost continuous with rear pair; gill opening wide, membranes not adhering to breast; tail fin deeply forked; a complete lateral line, with branches to top and bottom base of tail fin, no scales.

A neotropical genus with 6 species, five W Atlantic species found in the Greater Caribbean.