Sea Chubs

The Sea Chubs family (Kyphosidae), belonging to the order Perciformes, is a group of exclusively marine species, distributed in the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans. They are generally associated with shallow waters, but always close to the coast.

Sea Chubs have a medium sized body, some of the species can reach 75 cm in length. The body is oval in shape, slightly elongated and laterally compressed. The head is small and has a small mouth. Both jaws have a single row of teeth placed in a very close together, the roots of the teeth forming a radially grooved plate in its mouth. The teeth have a 'J' shape, being these of robust aspect and finished in a conical apex. The upper jaw is slightly protruding. As for the colouring of Sea Chubs, the colours are variable between species, although olive green and silver black predominate, always with the lower part of the body in lighter shades. Juveniles of certain species may present patterns of dark vertical bands.

The dorsal fin of Sea Chubs is unique and continuous. It is formed by 9-16 spines and 11-28 radius. The dorsal fin can be collected in a slit at the base of the dorsal fin, thus improving the hydrodynamics of the fish. The anal fin has 3 spines and between 11 and 26 spokes. The pectoral fins are short. The pelvic fins are inserted behind the plane of the base of the pectoral fins. The tail fin is more or less forked.

As for the feeding habits of Sea Chubs, they are mainly herbivorous species (subfamilies Girellinae and Kyphosinae), with carnivorous species feeding predominantly on benthic invertebrates. They are generally species with little culinary interest. A total of 53 species are described within the Sea Chubs family, arranged into 14 genera.