Sillago sihama

Author: (Forsskål, 1775)

Sillago sihama (Forsskål, 1775)

Status in World Register of Marine Species:
Accepted name: Sillago sihama (Forsskål, 1775) (updated 2009-06-25)

Diagnosis: body elongate, snout oblong, conical. A flat triangular spine on opercle. Mouth small, terminal; villiform teeth present in jaws and on vomer. Gillrakers 9-10 lower, 3-4 upper. First dorsal fin higher than the second and with 11 weak spines; second dorsal fin with 1 spine and 20-23 rays; anal fin with 2 spines and 21-24 rays; caudal fin emarginate, its upper lobe slightly larger and longer than lower lobe. Scales moderately small, 2-3, mostly 2, series on cheeks; 5-6 rows above lateral line, 9-10 below. Lateral line with 66-73 scales and additional 9-12 scales on caudal fin. Colour: back light brown, lower ventral flanks and belly whitish or silvery, without dark blotches. Both dorsal fins and caudal fin dusky, other fins pale. Size: to 25 cm SL, usually 15 cm.

Habitat: shallow coastal waters, close to sandy bottoms. Food: small; benthic invertebrates, particularly polychaetes. Reproduction: no data.

Distribution: a recent Suez Canal immigrant known off Lebanon (Mouneime, 1977) and off Israel (Ben-Tuvia, 1978). Elsewhere, widely distributed throughout Indo-Pacific from Red Sea to South Africa, Japan and Australia.