Sea Perches


Sea perches or lates perches are the common names for the members of the Latidae family. The family members are distinguished by their concave snout profile. Other features include their preopercle with a stout flat spine at angle, dorsal fin deeply incised, lateral line extending onto caudal fin, and eyes with reddish reflection.

Members of the Latidae are found in the Africa, Indian and Pacific oceans. There are 3 genera and 13 species worldwide. They are excellent food fishes, and some species are of commercial importance and good sports fishes. The family members can be found in sea, brackish and freshwater, most of the time in a small group or solitary. They feed mostly on prawn and small fishes.


Scientific Name: Lates calcarifer  (Bloch, 1790)
English Name: Giant Sea Perch, Barramundi
Mandarin Name: 尖吻鲈(Jiān wěn lú), 金目鲈 (Jīnmù lú), 盲槽 (Máng cáo), 石甲 (Shí jiǎ)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Siakap
Local Hokkien: Siakap, Kim Bak Lor
Local Teochew: Siakap
Local Cantonese: Seck Kap
Main Diagnostic Features: Mouth large and jaws reaching past eyes. Lower edge of preopercle with 3 or 4 large flat spines.
Size: Maximum total length over 2 m, commonly to 1.5 m and over 55 kg.
Remarks: Diadromous meaning migratory between fresh and salt waters

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Scientific Name: Psammoperca waigiensis  (Cuvier, 1828)
English Name: Waigieu Seaperch
Mandarin Name: 红眼鲈(Hóngyǎn lú)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Gelam, Siakap Laut, Kakap Laut, Selungsung
Main Diagnostic Features: Jaws reach back to under eyes. Lower edge of preopercle smooth, without spines, only 1 spine present at angle.
Size: Maximum total length about 47 cm; commonly between 20 and 30 cm.
Remarks: Marine, do not enter fresh water. Active during the night.