Bairdiella chrysoura

Super Group: 
Lacepède 1802
Dipterodon chrysourus (Lacépède 1802)


Diagnosis_Genus: Bairdiella Gill. Body oblong, compressed, with the dorsal outline rapidly descending in a nearly straight line from the dorsal fin, and with the abdominal outline nearly straight. Head compressed, conical, with the muzzle scarcely convex, and with the lower jaw ascending. Mouth terminal and oblique. Supramaxillary bones mostly exposed, and ceasing under or slightly behind the pupil of the eyes. Preoperculum with no distinct crest; its posterior margin and rounded angle denticulated, the teeth increasing in size towards the angle. Two lateral pores of each ramus of the jaw small; the two symphyseal ones rudimentary. Anterior row of stout and recurved conical teeth in each jaw, behind which, in the upper, is a narrow band of villiform ones. Anterior dorsal fin sustained by nine or ten spines. Anal fin with the second anal spine more than two-thirds as long as the longest branched ray. Caudal fin subtruncated. Lower pharyngeal bones combined form a lanceolate, or very deeply ex-cavated triangle ; each separately is semi-claviform. Their upper surface is covered with small teeth, and along the internal margin with a row of scarcely recurved more elongated ones. The upper pharyngeals are also clothed with small teeth, besides which, on the median bone, are conical ones like those of the lower bones. The first branchial arch is externally furnished with compressed setae, which are muricated on their internal borders; internally, they have transverse thick ridges with villiform teeth, like those of the other arches ; the external rows of ridges are larger than the internal. The scales of this genus are arranged in much less oblique lines than in most of the other representatives of the subfamily of Sciaenidae. An oblique row in the typical species extends from the commencement of the second dorsal to that of the anal. This genus has been established for the Perca argyroleuca of Dr. Mitchill, or the Corvina argyroleuca of Cuvier and Valenciennes, and the allied species chiefly found in the Caribbean and neighboring seas. The Homoprion xanthurus of Holbrook, or Homoprion subtruncatus, perhaps belongs to this genus also, but as it is said to have " two or three series of small, pointed, recurved, cardlike teeth, with an outer row of larger, conical, pointed teeth" in both jaws, it is not deemed advisable to positively place it there. The specimens referred to under that name by Dr. Girard, in the "Report on the Ichthyology of the Mexican Boundary Survey," as preserved in the Smithsonian Institution, belong to the Bairdiella argyroleuca. We have examined five of the specimens labelled as Homoprion xanthurus, and have counted the number of rays of the second dorsal fin. There are one spinous and twenty or twenty-one articulated rays, the last of which is double. They therefore agree in the number of rays, as well as in appearance, with the Bairdiella argyroleuca. The Homoprion subtruncatus has thirty-two articulated dorsal rays. A variation equalling a third of the greatest number of rays is rarely found in the same natural genus. Yet there is a very close resemblance between that species and the type of Bairdiella. It certainly shows much more affinity to the latter externally than to the Homoprion lanceolatus. This genus is less nearly allied to Corvina; it differs in form, squamation and the dentation of the margin of the preoperculum. The genus Stellifer of Cuvier is founded on the Bodianus stellifer of Bloch, a species supposed to belong to this group, but which cannot be positively identified.
Diagnosis_Species: Dipterodon chrysourus Lacepède. Le Diptéron Queue-jaune. This dipterodon was observed in the neighboring of the seas of Carolina. He has a silvery head, and a body dotted with lines and black spots. Persègue queue-jaune. Daubenton et Haüy, Encyclopédie méthodique. Id. Bonnaterre, planches de l'Encyclopédie méthodique. 7 rays at the gill membrane, 16 rays at each pectoral fine, one goaded ray and five articulated rays at each thoracic fin, 12 rays at the anal fin and 129 rays at the tail fin.

Bairdiella chrysura is found on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, ranging north to the vicinity of New York. It is abundant in New Jersey during the summer and early fall, spawning in June, July, and August. The height of the
spawning season in New Jersey waters is reached in June and in North Carolina waters in May. The eggs are spherical, transparent, slightly yellowish in color, and buoyant, with a faintly reticulated surface (Welsh & Breder, 1924).

Other description (FAO): A small fish, body oblong and compressed. Eye moderately large, about 4.5 in head length.Snoutblunt; mouth terminal, moderately large and oblique;teethsmall,setinnarrowbandonupper jaw and in a single row on lower jaw. Chin without barbel but with 6 mental pores (median pair often set in a pit); snout pointed with 8 pores (3 rostral and 5 marginal). Gill rakers long and slender, 22 to 24 on first arch. Preopercle with few spines at angle, lowest spine strongest and pointing downward.Spinous dorsal fin with 10 or 11 spines, posterior portion with 1 spine and 19 to 23 soft rays;anal fin with 2 spines and 8 to 10 soft rays, second spine sharp, more than 2/3 length of first soft ray;caudal fin truncate to slightly rhomboidal. Gas bladder with 2 chambers; anterior chamber yoke-shaped without appendages, posterior chamber simple, carrot-shaped. Lapillus enlarged, about 1/2 the size of sagitta. Scales ctenoid on body, head cycloid;basal halves of soft dorsal and anal fins covered with scales;lateral-line scales 45 to 50. Colour:silvery, greenish, or bluish above, bright silvery to yellowish on belly; lower fins mostly yellowish to dusky.

Body_adults_length_mean: 20 cm
Body_adults_length_max: 30 cm
Body_juvenile_length: < 15-21 mm (Beaufort, NC, at 2 years old) (Welsh & Breder, 1924)
Body_juvenile_length: < 5-100 mm (Terminos Lagoon, Mexico) (Chavance et al., 1984)
Body_larvae_preflexion_length: 2.30-4.20 mm (Dity, 1989)
Body_larvae_flexion_length: 3.84-4.56 mm (Dity, 1989)
Body_larvae_newly_hatched_length: 1.5-1.8 mm (Richards, 2009)
Body_egg_length: 0.70-0.80 mm (Kuntz, 1914)


Type species

The type species of the genus Bairdiella is Bodianus argyroleucus (Mitchill, 1815).

Type illustration / Type locality / Type specimen

Type locality: Carolina


Bairdiella chrysoura lives in Western Atlantic: New York to southern Florida in USA, and eastern and northern Gulf of Mexico to northern Mexico (Fishbase).
Habitat: coastal
Habitat: estuarine (for feeding and nursery) (Fishbase)
DEpth_adult: demersal
Substrate: water
Salinity: marine
Salinity: brackish
Salinity: freshwater
Depth_eggs: pelagic (Kuntz, 1914)
Oxygen_level: oxic
Depth: 0-104 m (Conabio)
Temperature: 13-26°C (Conabio)

Life cycle

Silver perch (Bairdiella chrysoura) attained a maximum age of 4 years in the Mississippi Sound (Grammer et al. 2009). Silver perch became sexually mature at the end of their first year of life (0 yr) (Grammer et al. 2009).
Bairdiella chrysoura is a non migratory species. There is no sexual dimorphism.
Longevity: more than 3 years
Generation_time: 3 to 12 months (Grammer et al. 2009)
Generation_time: 1 to 3 years (Beaufort N.C., Welsh & Breder, 1924)
Reproduction_mode: sexual
Spawning_method: external fertilization in the water column
Fertility_period: seasonal (during late spring and summer) (May to september, Wikipedia)

Feeding behaviour


Mode of locomotion

Motility: motile_swimming


Observation site(s)


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Amyloodinium ocellatum Gulf Coast Research Laboratory

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