Spotted Drum Adult Identification

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The spotted drum adult retains the same black and white-striped pattern of the juvenile spotted drum fish. Look for the white spots on the spotted drum's dorsal fin and tail with help from a scuba diving instructor in this free video on fish identification and marine life.

Part of the Video Series: Caribbean Fish
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Video Transcript

The marine organism we're going to identify now is the spotted drum adult. In another segment of this creature identification program, we described the juvenile spotted drum, which is one of the most elegant looking fish one will see in the tropical waters around the Americas. In this segment, we describe the less attractive adult member of this species. The adult spotted drum retains the same black and white striped color pattern of the juvenile, but the forward dorsal fin becomes shorter relative to the rest of its body and as the fish matures. The back door dorsal fin and tail are black with white spots which is the physical characteristic that gives this fish its name. They usually have a black bar that runs from the leading edge to the forward dorsal fin to the base of the tail. Adult spotted drums can reach an overall length of just under a foot. But most are six to nine inches long. They are a relatively uncommon fish and when you find one, they are usually swimming in a regular pattern under a ledge or at the mouth of a cay. They tend to stay in the same location for long periods of time, so if you find one, it will likely be in that same place if you return a few days or even weeks later. Their depth range is as shallow as fifteen feet to as deep as one hundred feet. They are relatively unafraid of divers and can often be observed closely as they swim their circuitous pattern. Spotted drums are nocturnal feeders, they feed on crabs, shrimps and polychaete - worms that is that they find on the reef at night when they leave their lair to hunt. No information was found on the reproductive habits of the spotted drums. That's the spotted drum adult.


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