Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Tetraodontiformes
(Puffers and filefishes) > Ostraciidae
Etymology: Lactophrys: Latin, concerned with milk + Greek, ophrys = eyebrow (Ref. 45335). More on author: Linnaeus.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 2 - 50 m (Ref. 9710). Subtropical; 45°N - 34°S, 98°W - 34°W
Western Atlantic: Canada (Ref. 5951), Massachusetts (USA) to Brazil, including Bermuda, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean. Mediterranean Sea (Ref. 50345).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 55.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 40637); common length : 30.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 5217); max. published weight: 3.3 kg (Ref. 40637)
With small diffuse white spots; two areas where the hexagonal plates are dark-edged, forming chain-like markings, one on the pectoral region of the body and the other half way between gill opening and posterior end of carapace; large individuals lose the pale spots and chain markings and develop an irregular dark reticulate pattern over the entire carapace and caudal peduncle (Ref. 13442).
Inhabits seagrass beds, coral rubble areas, and offshore reefs down to about 50 m. Feeds on a wide variety of small benthic invertebrates such as mollusks, crustaceans, worms and sessile tunicates, as well as some sea grasses (Ref. 3696). Highly esteemed food fish in the Caribbean (Ref. 3696).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Robins, C.R. and G.C. Ray, 1986. A field guide to Atlantic coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 354 p. (Ref. 7251)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 123416)
Threat to humans
Reports of ciguatera poisoning (Ref. 4690)
Fisheries: commercial; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 22.7 - 28, mean 25.5 °C (based on 450 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.6250 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.03548 (0.01723 - 0.07305), b=2.81 (2.62 - 3.00), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.3 ±0.3 se; based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Fec assumed to be > 10,000).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (32 of 100) .