Shorefishes of the Eastern Pacific online information system

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Species: Ophioscion strabo, Low-head croaker, Squint-eyed croaker

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

C: angular point
preopercle: 5-7 large teeth
A: 7; 2nd spine thick, 80% 1st ray

Ophioscion strabo Gilbert, 1897

Squint-eyed croaker, Low-head croaker

Body elongate, more or less compressed; head low and short, cavernous but firm to touch on top, upper profile strongly convex; eye 4.1-4.3 in head length; snout bulbous, projecting slightly in front of upper jaw; small horizontal mouth; teeth simple in bands, those in outer row of upper jaw slightly enlarged; snout with 8-12 pores; chin with 5 pores, without barbels; gill rakers short (< ½ length of gill filaments at angle of arch), 17-21; margin of preopercle with 5-7 well defined spines; dorsal fin continuous but deeply notched, XI + I, 22-24, second dorsal spine strong; anal rays II, 7, 2nd  spine thick, 80% length of first ray; pectoral fins short, barely reaching depressed pelvic fin tips; tail margin with blunt central point; scales on body and all or most of head rough; inner 2/3 of soft dorsal and anal with a scaly sheath;  pored lateral-line scales 47-50.

Color dull brownish with silvery reflections; fins dusky brown, except pelvics and anal nearly black.

Size: attains at least 30 cm.

Inhabits sand bottoms of bays, entering estuaries and river mouths.

Depth: 1-20 m.

The lower Gulf of California to Colombia.

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  • Brackish
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom + water column
  • Bottom
  • Near Bottom
  • Water column
  • Estuary
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom only
  • Beach
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Data
  • Carnivore
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • No Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic worms
Egg Type
  • Pelagic larva
  • No data
  • Pelagic
Global Endemism
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
  • All species
  • East Pacific endemic
Regional Endemism
  • All species
  • 3 provinces (Cortez + Mexican + Panamic) endemic
  • Continental TEP endemic
  • Continent only
  • Continent
  • TEP endemic
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Northern Subtropical (Cortez Province + Sinaloan Gap)
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
  • Northern Tropical (Mexican Province to Nicaragua + Revillagigedos)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Least concern
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 30
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 20