Main Species of Locally Caught Fish

Main Species of Locally Caught Fish



​Tonn/Bluefin Tuna
Thunnus thynnus

Bluefin Tuna

Max. Length:  300cm (common 50-150cm)
Dorsal fins set close together
No Markings on body
Pectoral fin short​




Thunnus alalunga


Max. Length:  100cm (common 50-80cm)

Close set dorsal fins

Long pectoral fin




Xiphias gladius


Max. Length: 450cm (common 80-220cm)

Long flattened sword

1st dorsal fin much longer than 2nd

Caudal peduncle with strong lateral keel




Coryphaena hippurus

 Dolphin Fish

Max. Length: 200cm (common 40-100cm)

Long flattened body

Long dorsal fin

Steep forehead



Fanfru/Pilot Fish

Naucrates ductor

 Pilot Fish

Max. Length: 70cm (common up to 35cm)

5-7 dark vertical stripes

1st dorsal fin 4-5 spines, 2nd dorsal fin long

Caudal peduncle with keel



Kavall/Chub mackerel

Scomber japonicus

 Chub Mackerel

Max. Length: 50cm (common 15-30cm)

Thin and light Sinuos (S-shaped) markings

5 small dorsal and anal finlets

Large eye



Pizzintun/Atlantic mackerel

Scomber scombrus

Atlantic Mackerel


Max Fork Length:  50cm (common 18-30cm)

Wide and dark vertical markings

5 small dorsal and anal finlets

Smaller eye



Laċċi Kaħla/Sprat

Sprattus sprattus


Max. Length: 16cm (common 8cm)

Dark blue with green reflections

1 central dorsal fin

Sides and underside silvery white




Boops boops


Max. Length: 36cm (common 10cm)

Grey dark back to silvery golden sides

Few thin longitudinal yellow-golden bands

Base of pectoral fin with a black spot



Trilja tal-qawwi/Striped red mullet

Mullus surmuletus

 Striped red Mullet

Max. Length: 40cm (common 10-25cm)

Sloping profile

Few thin longitudinal yellow-golden bands on sides

Pectoral fin with yellow stripes and black markings



Xabla/Silver scabbarfish

Lepidopus caudatus

 Silver Scabbard Fish

Max. Length: 210cm (common 50-150cm)

Long laterally flattened silver body, without scales

Long dorsal fin with dark patch above operculum

Lower Jaw longer than upper




Merliccius merluccius


Max. Length: 110cm (common 12-60cm)

Long body with elongated head, grey

1st dorsal fin short and triangular, 2nd Long

Lower jaw longer than upper




Scorpaenidae spp.

 Scorpion Fish

Mostly small

Body thick, heads armoured with spines

One dorsal fin with spinces preceding rays

At base of spiny rays lie venom glands



Cippullazza/Red scorpionfish

Scorpaena scrofa

 red Scorpion Fish

Max. Length: 66cm (common 20-30cm)

Reddish brown with dark and light mottling

Often with black, elongated blotch on dorsal fin

Numerous appendages on chin



Pagru/Common seabream

Pagrus pagrus

 Common Seabream

Max. Length: 82cm (common 20-60cm)

Pinkish body, head and tail darker

Steep forehead

Brown spot at base of dorsal fin



Rajja tal-fosos/Thornback ray

Raja clavata

 Thornback Ray

Max. Length: 110cm (common 30-80cm)

Back covered with spiny tubercules

Greyish of brownish with lighter and darker mottlings

Disc shaped with angled wings, snout slightly elongated



Qarnita/Common Octopus

Octopus vulgaris

 Common Octopus

Max. Length: 23cm (common 10-20cm)

Body strong with conspicuous siphon

2 rows of suckers on eight strong arms

Colour variable



Klamar/European squid

Loligo vulgaris

 European Squid

Max. Length: 30-40cm (common 15-25cm)

Body torpedo shaped, with paired fins running half-way along

2rows of large suckers on tentacles

Colour variable, often pink-white with purple brown mottling



Gamblu Aħmar/Giant red shrimp

Aristaeomorpha foliacea

 Giant Red Shrimp

Max. Length: 17cm (male), 22cm (female).  Common 13-14cm (male), 17-20cm (Female)

Large sized (females larger)

Colour:  Red

Rostrum different in the sexes



Gamblu Abjad/Deep water pink shrimp

Parapenaeus longirostris

 Deep Water Pink Shrimp

Max. Length: 16cm (male), 19cm (female).  Common 8-14cm (male), 12-16cm (Female)

Medium to small sized (females larger)

Colour:  Pink

8 spines on rostrum