Family gerreidae
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Family Gerreidae. Mojarras Common species: Spotfin Mojarra ( Eucinostomus argenteus ). Gerreidae Characteristics. Highly protrusible jaw, compressed silvery body Use mouth for feeding on benthic invertebrates Passes sand out gill slits and captures prey on gill rakers

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Family Gerreidae

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Family gerreidae

Family Gerreidae

  • Mojarras

  • Common species:

    • Spotfin Mojarra (Eucinostomus argenteus)

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

Gerreidae characteristics

Gerreidae Characteristics

  • Highly protrusible jaw, compressed silvery body

  • Use mouth for feeding on benthic invertebrates

    • Passes sand out gill slits and captures prey on gill rakers

  • The silver jenny (Eucinostomus gula) and spotfin mojarra (Eucinostomus argenteus) are almost indistinguishable

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

Family haemulidae

Family Haemulidae

  • Grunts

  • Common species:

    • Tomtate (Haemulon aurolineatum)

    • White Grunt (Haemulon plumeri)

    • Pigfish (Orthopristis chrysoptera)

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

Haemulidae characteristics

Beautiful schooling fish, usually found associated with reefs

Small mouth and teeth, large molariform teeth on pharynx

Haemulidae Characteristics

French Grunts

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

Diurnal migrations

Diurnal Migrations

  • Form diurnal aggregations on reefs and migrate to sand and grass beds to feed

  • Interestingly, migrations always follow the same route

    • Routes are not genetically inherited, but learned socially as “cultural traditions”

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

We have to stop meeting like this

We have to stop meeting like this!!

White Grunts

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

White grunt haemulon plumieri

White Grunt (Haemulon plumieri)

  • Caught frequently in the S.E. U.S., one of the largest grunts (25” and 8lbs.)

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

Tomtate haemulon aurolineatum

Tomtate (Haemulon aurolineatum)

  • The smallest of the grunts; it is not commercially viable

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

Family sparidae

Family Sparidae

  • Porgies

  • Common species:

    • Red Porgy (Pagrus pagrus)

    • Whitebone Porgy (Calamus leucosteus)

    • Sheepshead (Archosargus probatocephalus)

    • Pinfish (Lagodon rhomboides)

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

Sparidae characteristics

Continuous dorsal fin; front jaw has incisor-like or canine teeth

Grunt-like in appearance, but feeding habits are more diversified

Have well-developed molariform teeth on pharyngeal jaws

Sparidae Characteristics

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

Red porgy

Red Porgy

  • Was once one of NC’s most valued reef fish but severely overfished in 1980’s

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae



  • Ubiquitous, omnivores (mostly plants)

  • Larvae are found in estuaries in late winter and early spring

Gerreidae, Haemulidae, & Sparidae

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