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Species: Pomadasys branickii, Sand grunt

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large eye
opercular membrane: yellow-brown
pectoral passes pelvic tip

Pomadasys branickii (Steindachner, 1879)

Sand grunt

Elongate, strongly compressed; eye relatively large, 2.6-3.2 in head length; mouth moderate in size, inside not red, lips thin; chin with 2 pores at front and 2 inside hole behind, plus a longitudinal groove; preopercle weakly or not serrated, ventral serrations not forward pointing; dorsal fin XIII, 11-12, moderately notched; anal III, 7, second anal spine very long and stout, its length about two times eye diameter or more; pectoral fins relatively long, passing tips of depressed pelvic fins; no scales on soft dorsal and anal fins; 47-51 pored lateral line scales; 5 oblique rows of scales between lateral line and origin of dorsal fin.

Silvery brown with dark yellowish-brown opercular membrane yellow-brown; iris yellow brown; fins brown; juveniles with ~ five indistinct dusky bars from nape along back to tail base.

Size: grows to at least 30 cm.

Inhabits muddy bays and estuaries, also enters river mouths.

Depth: 0-100 m.

Southern Baja and the lower 2/3 Gulf of California to Peru.

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  • Freshwater
  • Marine
  • Brackish
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom + water column
  • Near Bottom
  • Bottom
  • Mangrove
  • Water column
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Estuary
  • Soft bottom only
  • Sand & gravel
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • No Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic worms
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
Egg Type
  • No data
  • Pelagic larva
  • Pelagic
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • East Pacific endemic
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
Regional Endemism
  • All species
  • Continent only
  • Continent
  • Continental TEP endemic
  • 3 provinces (Cortez + Mexican + Panamic) endemic
  • TEP endemic
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Northern Subtropical (Cortez Province + Sinaloan Gap)
  • Northern Tropical (Mexican Province to Nicaragua + Revillagigedos)
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Least concern
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 30
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 100