Common Dentex (Dentex Dentex)

Latin name: Dentex dentex
Common name: Common dentex
In other languages: E: Denton, F: Dente commun, D: Zahnbrasse
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Family: Sparidae
Genus: Dentex

Distribution: Mediterranean, Atlantic.

Habitat: In inshore waters over the continental shelf from 10 metres down to as much as 200 metres, where they range over sandy ground. Adult dentex can also be found over zostera and posidonia meadows very close to the shore. They will even range into marinas where sea grass meadows are still found.

Reproduction: Breeds in May (Mediterranean).

Behaviour: This demersal species is a fierce hunter and usually moves solitary.

Diet: Cephalopods, molluscs, small fish, with one of its favourites being sand smelt.

Size: Common: 20 - 50cm, maximum: 100 cm.

Shape: Muscular oval body, steep forehead.

Colour: Markings that this species carries underwater quickly fade away when landed. The four or five hazy cross bands that are a backdrop to the dark blue spots on both flanks can only be seen when the fish is alive.

Did you know? Divers encounter this fish mainly around wreck sites. It takes a slow breathing, slow moving diver, to observe this fish without putting it to flight.