Atlantic Spadefish

Latin Name: Chaetodipterus faber

The angel-like Atlantic spadefish is actually in the Ephippidae family which includes the batfishes and scats. These gregarious fish can often be observed in large schools of up to 500 individuals from Massachusetts to Southern Brazil. As juveniles, spadefish inhabit shallow estuaries and mangroves swimming in such a way that its highly compressed body is parallel with the water’s surface in order to resemble a dead leaf or piece of debris. These fish have numerous thin, conical-shaped teeth and feed on benthic invertebrates. Most likely due to their diet their skeletons are heavily laden with oil giving the prepared skeleton an amber appearance.