Family: Scombridae, Mackerels view all from this family
Description The Atlantic bonito, Sarda sarda is a large mackerel-like fish of the family Scombridae. It is common in shallow waters of the Atlantic Ocean where it is an important commercial and game fish.
Atlantic bonito belong to a group which have the dorsal fins very near, or separated by a narrow interspace. It has the body completely scaled with those scales in the pectoral fin area and the lateral line usually larger in size. Bonitos (fishes in the genus Sarda) differ from tuna by their compressed bodies, their lack of teeth on the roof of the mouth, and certain differences in colouration.
Atlantic bonito share Atlantic waters with the striped bonito, Sarda orientalis (the Atlantic population of which is sometimes considered a separate species, Sarda velox). The striped bonito has been taken on the Atlantic coast as far north as Cape Cod. It is similar in its habits, but somewhat smaller than the more common Atlantic bonito. The Atlantic bonito can be distinguished from its relative by its dark oblique stripes on the back and with a maxillary only about half as long as the head; whereas the striped bonito has striping on its topside nearly horizontal and a maxillary more than half the length of the head.
Atlantic bonito grow up to 75 cm (30 in) and weighs 5-6 kg (10 to 12 pounds) at this size. The world record is 18 pounds and 4 ounces, and was caught in the Azores.
Dimensions Up to 3' (91 cm); 16 3/4 lbs (7.6 kg).
Habitat Open ocean, Ocean or bay shallows.
Range New England, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Florida, Texas, Eastern Canada.