Snubnose Dart, Trachinotus blochii (Lacépède 1801)

Other Names: Buck-nosed Trevally, Dart, Oyster Cracker, Oyster Eater, Oyster-eater, Snub-nose Dart, Snubnose Pompano, Snub-nosed Dart, Snubnosed Pompano, Snub-nosed Swallowtail

A Snubnose Dart, Trachinotus blochii, on the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland. Source: Graham Edgar / Reef life Survey. License: CC By Attribution

A relatively deep-bodied bluish-grey dart becoming paler below, sometimes with a golden-orange tinge, especially on the snout and lower body, a dark second dorsal fin with a dusky orange lobe and a dark leading edge, a yellowish anal fin lobe with a dark leading edge, and a dark to dusky orange caudal fin with a black margin on the caudal-fin lobes. Juveniles are silvery with pale fins, except for brownish to brownish-orange lobes of median fins and anterior half of pelvic fins.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2022, Trachinotus blochii in Fishes of Australia, accessed 27 May 2024,

Snubnose Dart, Trachinotus blochii (Lacépède 1801)

More Info


Shark Bay region and offshore reefs of north Western Australia, around the tropical north to Batemans Bay, New South Wales on the southeast coast; also Cocos (Keeling) Islands in the eastern Indian Ocean, and the Lord Howe Province and Norfolk Island in the Tasman Sea. Elsewhere, the species is widespread in the tropical Indo-west-central Pacific.

Inhabits shallow coastal waters, usually close to reefs, often along reef margins. Juveniles usually school in shallow sandy and muddy areas, often around river mouths, and along sandy shores.


Dorsal fin VI (short, often embedded) + I,18-20; Anal fin I,16-18.Snout profile broadly rounded; tongue toothless (except 2–3 slender teeth rarely on small specimens). 


Head and body bluish-grey above, paler below; large adults sometimes with most of body golden-orange, especially snout and lower half of body; 2nd dorsal fin dark, fin lobe dusky orange; caudal fin dark to dusky orange, leading edges darkest; juveniles silvery with pale fins except brownish to dusky orange lobes of median fins and anterior half of pelvic fins.


Feeds on hard-shelled molluscs and other invertebrates.


Of minor commercial importance, particularly in artisanal fisheries, and aquacultured in some areas. Also a popular sports fish and displayed in public aquaria.

Similar Species

The similar Giant Oyster Cracker, Trachinotus anak, has shorter dorsal and anal-fin lobes in adults, and lacks the dark leading edges and black margin on the caudal-fin lobes of the Snubnose Dart.


The species is presumably named for the physician-naturalist Marcus Elieser Bloch, a prominent 18th century ichthyologist.

Species Citation

Caesiomorus blochii Lacépède 1801,  Histoire Naturelle des Poissons 3: 92, 95, pl. 3(2). Type locality: not stated in publication (= Fort Dauphin, near Tôlanaro, southeastern Madagascar).


Bray, D.J. 2022


Atlas of Living Australia

Snubnose Dart, Trachinotus blochii (Lacépède 1801)


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Smith-Vaniz, W.F. & Walsh, S.J. 2019. Indo-West Pacific species of Trachinotus with spots on their sides as adults, with description of a new species endemic to the Marquesas Islands (Teleostei: Carangidae). Zootaxa 4651(1): 1-37.

Smith-Vaniz, W.F. & Williams, I. 2016. Trachinotus blochii (errata version published in 2017). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T20436497A115384558. Downloaded on 21 June 2021.

Yearsley, G.K., Last, P.R. & Ward, R.D. (eds) 1999. Australian Seafood Handbook. Hobart : CSIRO Marine Research 460 pp.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37337075

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:1-55 m

Fishing:Sports and minor commercial fish

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:110 cm FL

Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map