Shorefishes of the Eastern Pacific online information system

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Species: Peprilus ovatus, Cortez butterfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

body deep
snout < eye
D & A front in angular point
vertebrae 31-33
slit-pores along back

Peprilus ovatus Horn, 1970

Cortez butterfish

Body highly compressed, a deep oval, (depth 54-68% of SL); eye large, surrounded by a fatty right; snout very short, distinctly < eye length, mouth small, oblique, ends before or under front of eye; jaw teeth compressed, 3-pointed, in 1 row, no teeth on roof of mouth; gill rakers 21-26; dorsal and anal fins long based, front lobes slightly raised in a blunt point, anal much lower than dorsal; dorsal rays IV (III-IV), 40-46; anal rays II, 40-46; no pelvic fins but a small spine projecting from pelvis; pectorals long and pointed, 19-23 rays; tail fin deeply forked, stiff; scales very small, smooth, very easily shed; dorsal and anal fins covered with scales; lateral line high, follows upper body profile, almost complete; often a series of irregularly spaced, slit-like pores along upper body; 31-33 vertebrae.

Silvery white

Size: reaches 28 cm.

Inhabits sand bottoms of exposed coasts.

Depth: 0-27 m.

Known only from the northern Gulf of California.

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  • Marine Only
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom + water column
  • Mid Water
  • Bottom
  • Near Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Mud
  • Water column
FishBase Habitat
  • Bentho-Pelagic
Feeding Group
  • Planktivore
  • Carnivore
  • No Data
  • Zooplankton
  • Pelagic crustacea
  • No Data
  • Pelagic jellyfish/ctenophores
  • Bony fishes
Egg Type
  • No data
  • Pelagic larva
  • Pelagic
Global Endemism
  • East Pacific endemic
  • All species
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continental TEP endemic
  • Cortez province endemic
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • All species
  • Northern Gulf of California endemic
  • Temperate Eastern Pacific, primarily
  • TEP endemic
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • North Temperate (Californian Province &/or Northern Gulf of California)
IUCN Red List
  • Not evaluated / Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 28
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 27