Trachinotus carolinus

Common Name

Florida Pompano

Year Described

Linnaeus, 1766


Dorsal Fin: 6 spines (the first embedded in large fish), followed by I, 22-27
Anal Fin: 2 spines, followed by I, 20-24
Pelvic Fin: I, 5
Gill Rakers: 5-7 upper, 8-14 lower
Vertebrae: 10 precaudal, 14 caudal

Body spade-shaped and deep, with a rounded dorsal profile and a blunt snout. Eye small with jaw reaching under mid-eye. Teeth presrnt in small fish but disappear in larger fish (>20cm). Dorsal and anal fins with short anterior lobes, not reaching caudal fin when depressed. Pectoral fin and pelvic fins small. Tail large and deeply forked. Lateral line undulating on anterior half, straight on posterior half with no scutes. No caudal groove or keel.


Silvery overall with light grey to bluish dorsal surface. Belly and anal fin yellowish to gold. The dorsal fin and tail are dusky to yellowish with a darker anterior lobe. No spots present on side.


Averages to 35cm. Maximum size to 63cm.


Coastal with adults found in deeper waters. Juveniles form large schools in the surf zone, adults in smaller groups. Usually found over soft bottoms, often in estuaries.


Massachusetts to Brazil, including the Caribbean islands.


Smith-Vaniz, W.F. 2003. Carangidae (pp 1426-1468). In: Carpenter. 2003. The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic v. 3.