Common dentex

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Dentex dentex
Dentex dentex 1.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Suborder: Percoidei
Superfamily: Percoidea
Family: Sparidae
Genus: Dentex
Species: D. dentex
Binomial name
Dentex dentex
(Linnaeus, 1758)

Common dentex (Dentex dentex) is a species of Sparidae fish.

Dentex is common in the Mediterranean Sea, but also seen in the Black Sea and the Eastern Atlantic Ocean from the British Isles to Mauretania, sometimes up to Senegal and Canary Islands. It lives in sandy or stony deeps, from just some metres to 200 m, and is an active predator, feeding on other fish, mollusca and cephalopods.

Dentex is solitary for most of the year, but during reproduction it lives in groups for some weeks: fully-grown dentex stay together just two to three weeks during spring in the warmer water near the surface. Adult dentex can reach a length of more than one metre, and weight up to 20 kg.

Young dentex have a slightly different livery, brown-blue with blue fins, than adults, which are grey-blue.

Grilled common dentex from Adriatic sea.


  • Louisy, Patrick (2006). Trainito, Egidio, ed. Guida all'identificazione dei pesci marini d'Europa e del Mediterraneo. Milan: Il Castello. ISBN 88-8039-472-X.