Atherina presbyter Cuvier, 1829
Sand smelt
Atherina presbyter
photo by Ƙstergaard, T.

Family:  Atherinidae (Silversides), subfamily: Atherininae
Max. size:  20 cm TL (male/unsexed); max. reported age: 4 years
Environment:  pelagic-neritic, oceanodromous
Distribution:  Eastern Atlantic: Kattegat (rare) and British Isles to Canary Islands, Mauritania and Cape Verde, also western Mediterranean.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 7-9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 11-14; Anal spines: 1-1; Anal soft rays: 14-17. Scales in longitudinal series 52-57. Vertebrae 46-52 (Morocco), 49-52 (the Netherlands). No pyloric appendages. A large, characteristic, brilliant silvery stripe running along flanks from head to tail, often outlined in black. No true lateral line (Ref. 232). Eye diameter same with snout length (Ref. 35388).
Biology:  Small pelagic fishes in coastal areas and estuaries. Schooling, seasonal migrations in the Atlantic. Feeds on carnivorous small crustaceans and fish larvae (Ref. 5980). Reproduces in spring and summer (Ref. 30578).
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 20 May 2014 Ref. (120744)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   
 

Entered by: Froese, Rainer - 17.10.90
Modified by: Kesner-Reyes, Kathleen - 12.02.14
Checked by: Agustin, Liza Q. - 31.08.94

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