| Ecological Descriptors
Body spindle-shaped with some lateral compression. Tail deeply forked. Body silver, but can darken to almost black, especially when feeding towards the bottom. Bright blue and black band runs dorsally from rear of head to lower lobe of tail . Other fins clear. Scutes along lateral line in rear 1/3 of body are silvery/ body-coloured.
This species inhabits shallow (usually <20m), clear waters around coastal reefs. It occurs mostly in small to large schools and is occasionally solitary. Juveniles are associated with Sargassum seaward rafts. Prey items include fish, some shrimp and other invertebrates. Feeding habits vary according to growth and season, juveniles feed on zooplankton and adults are piscivores (after 30 cm fork length).
Matures at ~30cm. Spawning probably occurs offshore from February to August. It exhibits pair courtship in schools exceeding 1,000 fish, primarily during the full moon and waning moon periods between February and October. however, spawining periods may be biphasic, March-April and July-August.
(C) Fernando Herranz Martín