Psetta maxima

Author: Linnaeus, 1758

Psetta maxima Linnaeus, 1758

Status in World Register of Marine Species:
Accepted name: Psetta maxima (Linnaeus, 1758) (updated 2009-06-25)

Diagnosis: body almost circular and rather thick. Dorsal fin with 57-80 rays, the anterior of which not much branched and not free from membrane; anal fin with 43-58 rays. Almost all scales transformed to bony tubercles. Colour: very variable, generally greyish or sandy brown. Size: to about 100 cm SL.

Habitat: sandy and stony bottoms down to about 70 m; rather common in brackish waters. Food: bottom-fish, crustaceans and bivalves. Reproduction: between April and August. Pelagic eggs. Commercial importance: a highly esteemed fish.

Distribution: whole Mediterranean and along the European coasts to Arctic Circle, also found in most of the Baltic Sea (P. m. maxima); Black Sea extending into the eastern Mediterranean (P. m. maeotica).

Eggs, larvae and young stages. Ehrenbaum, 1905: 194-198 | Norman, 1934: 264 Padoa, 1956: 815-820 | Jones, 1972: 965-986, fig. 3, 10, 11.
Otoliths (sagitta). Chaine, 1936: 57, pl. IV | Bauzá-Rullán, 1958: 121, pl. IV (fig. 16-21) | Schmidt, 1968: 59.


Psetta maxima maxima: bony tubercles generally developed only on ocular side, always much smaller than eye.

Psetta maxima maeotica: bony tubercles generally developed on both sides, always larger than eye; includes P. m. ponticus Tortonese (1971: 325).
Eggs, larvae and young stages. Carausu, 1952: 598.
Otoliths (sagitta). No data.