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Seabasses (Asian)

Asian seabasses or Asian seaperches are members of the Lateolabracidae family. They are found in the western Pacific Ocean. They inhabit shallow coastal, estuarine and fresh waters. Members of the family have a continuous and deeply incised dorsal fin with 12–15 spines and 12–16 soft rays, 2 flat spines oprecle, and a complete lateral line that does not extend onto caudal fin. Their mouth is large with lower jaw extending beyond their upper jaw.

The Asian seabasses are carnivorous with juvenile feeding main zooplankton while adult feeding mainly on small fishes and crustaceans.

There is only 1 genus and about 3 species of Lateolabracidae worldwide.

Scientific Name: Lateolabrax japonicus  (Cuvier, 1828)
English Name: Japanese Seabass, Japanese Seaperch
Mandarin Name | 鱼类中文名: 日本真鲈 (Rìběn zhēn lú),花鲈 (Huā lú)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Siakap Jepun
Main Identification Features: Dorsal fin continuous, deeply incised, with 12–15 spines and 12–16 soft rays. Mouth large, lower jaw anteriorly extending beyond upper. Teeth small, villiform in band, on upper and lower jaws, vomer and palatine. Opercle with 2 flat spines. Lateral line complete, but not extending onto caudal fin, with 66–82 scales. Body scales ctenoid (rough to touch).
Size: Maximum total length 102 cm.
Habitat and Ecology: Shallow coastal and estuarine waters, occasionally entering freshwater. Adult feeds on small fishes, gastropods, cephalopods, and shrimps.
Remarks: Uncommon in Malaysian water.