Microchirus ocellatus

Author: Linnaeus, 1758

Microchirus (Microchirus) ocellatus Linnaeus, 1758

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

Diagnosis: body oval. Upper eye less than its own diameter from dorsal profile of head. Anterior nostril on blind side not enlarged, its distance from front margin of head about twice in its distance from cleft of mouth; anterior nostril on eyed side with a backward-pointing tube reaching to front border of lower eye. Dorsal fin beginning before vertical through front border of upper eye, with 61-77 finrays; anal fin with 48-58 finrays; pectoral fin on eyed side small, with 6-8 finrays, on blind side shorter, with 5-7 finrays; caudal fin separate from last dorsal and anal finrays. Lateral line with 54-78 pored scales, the supra-temporal branch not very distinct, forming an angular S-shape, the ascending part running upward and backward. Vertebrae 37-38. Colour: eyed side brownish or reddish-grey with a large dark blotch on midbody and 4 ocelli (2 each along dorsal and anal fins). Size: to 20 cm SL.

Habitat: demersal on mud and sand, mainly around beds of eel grass, on the continental shelf at 40-300 m. Food: no data. Reproduction: no data.

Distribution: eastern Atlantic (south-west of Iberian Peninsula, Madeira) and Mediterranean (including Adriatic and Bosphorus). Elsewhere, southward to the Canaries until the gulf of Guinea, coast of Natal and canal of Mozanbique (see Quéro and Desoutter, 1990.

Eggs, larvae and young stages. No data.
Otoliths (sagitta). Frost, 1930: 237, pl. 9 (fig. 2) | Chaine, 1936: 176, pl. 11.