Florida Pompano: Trachinotus carolinus


  • Dark greenish-gray on back, shading to silver sides
  • Yellowish coloration on belly
  • Fish found in dark waters have yellow on throat, pelvic fins and anal fin
  • Dorsal fin begins in front of anal fin
  • Dorsal, anal and caudal fins are short and upright
  • Forehead slopes gently backward
  • Deep, compressed body with a small mouth
  • Caudal fin with a wider fork than permit

Similar Species: Permit, T. falcatus (dorsal fin begins over the anal fin and grow much larger than Florida pompano)

Size: Up to 24 inches (8 pounds) 


Inshore and nearshore waters, especially along sandy beaches, oyster bars and over seagrass beds, often in turbid water. Found in water as deep as 130 feet.


Spawn offshore March to September.

Feeds on mollusks and crustaceans, especially sand fleas.  

Local movements are influenced by the tide, and seasonal movements are influenced by temperature.

Additional Information

State Record:External Website 8 lb 4 oz, caught near Port St. Joe

Recreational Regulations

Image Credit: © Diane Rome Peebles

FWC Facts:
Renew your boat's registration decal annually, and display it within 6 inches of the registration numbers on the port (left) side.

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