Atlantic Spadefish: Chaetodipterus faber


  • Silver color with 4 to 6 black vertical bars on each side (may fade in larger fish)
  • Deep, compressed body
  • First and second dorsal fins separated
  • Tail-shape concave
  • Second dorsal fin and anal fin elongated
  • Young are entirely dark brown or black in color

Similar Species: No close resemblance, but frequently called angelfish by mistake

Size: Up to 36 inches (20 pounds); common to 2 pounds


Inshore, nearshore, over seagrass beds and around structure


Spawn in spring and summer; travel in large schools; small juveniles may drift on their sides to mimic floating debris; feed on crustaceans and other invertebrates

Recreational Regulations

Additional Information

State Record:External Website  This species is not currently eligible for a state record.

Recreational Regulations

Image Credit: © Diane Rome Peebles

FWC Facts:
Sea turtles range in size from the 75- to 100-pound Kemp’s ridley to the 1,300-pound, 8-foot-long leatherback.

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