Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Tetraodontiformes
(Puffers and filefishes) > Tetraodontidae
(Puffers) > Tetraodontinae
Etymology: Sphoeroides: Greek, sphaira = ball + Greek, suffix, oides = similar to (Ref. 45335).
Environment / Climate / Range
Marine; brackish; reef-associated; depth range 2 - 70 m (Ref. 26999). Subtropical; 43°N - 30°S, 98°W - 34°W
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 30.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 26999); common length : 12.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 3821)
(total): 9. 11-14 sharply defined round black spots on head and lower side of body. The numerous tan lappers on the rear part of the body and distinct spots along the lower side make it unmistakable (Ref. 26938).
Western Atlantic: Massachusetts, USA to Santa Catarina, Brazil (Ref. 57756). Replaced by Sphoeroides marmoratus in the eastern Atlantic (P. Wirtz, pers. comm. 10/04).
Abundant in all inshore habitats where there is adequate cover, such as seagrass beds and reef flats. Feeds on mollusks, crustaceans and echinoderms (Ref. 36453). Generally common (Ref. 9710). Traded as an aquarium fish at Ceará, Brazil (Ref. 49392).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Robins, C.R. and G.C. Ray, 1986. A field guide to Atlantic coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 354 p. (Ref. 7251)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 96402)
CITES (Ref. 94142)
Threat to humans
Poisonous to eat (Ref. 3821)
Fisheries: of no interest; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01820 (0.01396 - 0.02373), b=2.88 (2.81 - 2.95), based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 3.3 ±0.2 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (25 of 100) .