African spadefish have flattened bodies, with small mouths and large foreheads. Their bodies are silver-grey, with a series of dark, vertical bands that fade with age. Sometimes faded yellow colouration is present on their caudal and dorsal fins and their bellies.

Spadefish feed on both free-swimming and bottom-dwelling crustaceans.

African spadefish inhabit inshore reefs on the African east coast, from Somalia to South Africa's Eastern Cape.

Species Facts

  • Grows up to 75cm and over 8kg.
  • Also known as a graafvis, peixe-galo, shana, buunshoole and John Dory. It should be noted that many of these names also refer to Zeus faber, the John Dory for which it is often confused.