Smoothbelly sardinella
  • Amblygaster leiogaster
  • English Name : Smoothbelly sardinella
  • Local Name : Maarehi
  • Size : Common to 15 cm; max. 23 cm
  • Family : Order : Specimen :
  • CLUPEIDAE Clupeiformes MRS/0492/97
  • Distinctive Characters: Body moderately slender, scutes not prominent. 31-35 lower gill rakers on first gill arch. Pelvic fin with 8 rays. Last two anal fin rays enlarged. Fronto-parietal bones (on top of head) with 7 – 14 striations. Upper and lower bulges on supremaxillary bone symmetrical.
  • Colour: Back blue-green, flanks silvery and without spots. Dorsal fin dusky.
  • Habitat and Biology: Pelagic and usually inshore, forms schools in shallow coastal waters. Distribution: Indo-West Pacific.
  • Remarks: Amblygaster leiogaster does not appear to be especially common in the Maldives, since this is the first record of its occurrence here. However, this may be due to the fact that it is not caught by the fishing gears normally used here. The specimen reported here was taken during experimental fishing carried by the Marine Research Station using gillnets on 25th April 1996.