Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Carangidae
(Jacks and pompanos)
Etymology: Oligoplites: Greek, oligos = small + Greek, hoplites = armed (Ref. 45335).
Environment / Climate / Range
Marine; brackish; reef-associated. Subtropical; 45°N - 35°S
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 35.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 5217); common length : 27.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 5217); max. published weight: 287 g (Ref. 3277)
(total): 5 - 6;
soft rays: 18 - 21. Body elongate and strongly compressed (depth from 3.5 to 4.4 times in standard length); posterior end of upper jaw reaching posterior rim of eye; upper jaw teeth small and villiform; lower branch of first gill arch with 14 to 18 gill rakers; scales small but visible, needle-shaped, embedded in the skin; back blue green; flanks and belly silvery to white, sometimes with yellow or golden highlights; pectoral and caudal fins yellowish (Ref. 55763); Dorsal fin has 5 nearly separate spines.
Western Atlantic: Maine, USA and northern Gulf of Mexico to Uruguay; throughout most of the West Indies (Ref. 3277). Absent from the Bahamas (Ref. 26938). Eastern Pacific: Baja California, Mexico to Ecuador (Ref. 9283). Two subspecies exists (Ref. 3277): Oligoplites saurus saurus (western Atlantic population) and Oligoplites saurus inornatus (eastern Pacific population).
Found inshore, usually along sandy beaches, in bays and inlets (Ref. 9283). Enters estuaries and fresh water (Ref. 9283). Prefers turbid water (Ref. 9283). Occurs in schools, usually large and fast moving, often leaping out of the water (Ref. 9283). Juveniles may float at the surface with tail bent and head down. Feeds on fishes and crustaceans (Ref. 9283). Its dorsal and anal spines are connected to venomous glands that can inflict painful wounds (Ref. 9283). Venom glands were not visible, not able to be confirmed in specimen (Ref. 57406). Current information in the table (dangerous fish) do not match; needs verification. Juveniles have incisor-like outer teeth and serve as cleaners for other fish; as fish grow, their teeth become conical and their diet changes (Ref. 26938). Marketed fresh and salted or dried but the flesh is not highly esteemed (Ref. 9283).
Smith-Vaniz, W.F., 1995. Carangidae. Jureles, pámpanos, cojinúas, zapateros, cocineros, casabes, macarelas, chicharros, jorobados, medregales, pez pilota. p. 940-986. In W. Fischer, F. Krupp, W. Schneider, C. Sommer, K.E. Carpenter and V. Niem (eds.) Guia FAO para Identification de Especies para lo Fines de la Pesca. Pacifico Centro-Oriental. 3 Vols. FAO, Rome.
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 90363)
Fisheries: minor commercial; gamefish: yes; bait: occasionally
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on empirical models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5312 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00738 (-0.09300 - 0.10776), b=2.78 (2.71 - 2.84), based on LWR estimates for species & family-BS (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 4.5 ±0.8 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 to moderate vulnerability (25 of 100) .