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Author: (Lowe, 1852)

Zenopsis conchifer (Lowe, 1852)

Diagnosis: body deep, strongly compressed, caudal peduncle longer than deep; head deep, its dorsal profile concave over eye, no serrations on bony ridge above eye; mouth large and very protractile, with small and moderate-sized canine teeth in jaws. Pectoral fins short, pelvic fins about one and a half times longer, with I + 5-6 finrays, the base before vertical from front border of eye, dorsal fin with IX + 24-27 finrays, the fin high and somewhat sail-like (but spinous rays not extended as filaments), anal fin with 111 + 24-26 finrays. No scales on body; scutes present along belly; large bony bucklers present along bases of dorsal and anal fins. Colour: silvery grey, with moderate black spots in juveniles. Size: to 75 cm SL, usually 20-50 cm.

Habitat: near the bottom or in midwater, from 100 m down to 400 m or more, mainly at 200-300 m; in small schools. Food: mainly other fishes. Reproduction: in summer (at least in tropical West African waters).

Distribution: Atlantic, from north of the Bay of Biscay, but rare in Bay of Biscay and southward to Morocco. Elsewhere, not uncommon from Morocco to Cape Blanc and common southward to southern Africa.

Eggs, larvae and young stages. Juveniles described by Saldanha, 1968.
Otoliths (sagitta). No data.

Sailfin dory (Zenopsis conchifer)