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Marine Animal Encyclopedia

Ladyfish Elops saurus

The ladyfish has a single dorsal fin in the middle of its back and a tail that is deeply forked. Shoals of this slim, silvery blue fish can be found close to the shore and will skip along the surface if alarmed by a boat’s engine noise. The adult fish move offshore to spawn in open water, and the young larvae, which resemble eel larvae, eventually drift back into sheltered bays and lagoons. Also known as the ten-pounder, the ladyfish is considered a good game fish and will leap out of the water when hooked. It is fished commercially, but it is not a very high-quality food fish and so is often used for bait.

Ladyfish habitat mapzoom image
  • Order Elopiformes
  • Length Up to 3 ft (1 m)
  • Weight 22 lb (10 kg)
  • Depth 0–165 ft (0–50 m)
  • Distribution Coastal waters of western Atlantic and Caribbean Sea