Selar crumenophthalmus Click to enlarge image
A Bigeye Scad caught on hook and line by D. Nobbs, off Lord Howe Island , New South Wales , January 2003 (AMS I.43325-001). Image: Geoff Kelly
© Geoff Kelly

Fast Facts

  • Classification
  • Size Range
    The species grows to about 30 cm in length.


A schooling species that occurs in the tropical inshore waters of the open seas.


The Bigeye Scad is bluish-green to green above grading to white below. There is black opercular spot and sometimes a yellow stripe along the side of the body. It has adipose tissue covering the eye with the exception of an oval slit positioned over the pupil. There is a deep groove in the lower margin of the gill opening, with a large papilla above it.

Bigeye Scad, Selar crumenophthalmus

The deep groove in the lower margin of the gill opening is a distinctive characteristic of the Bigeye Scad.

Image: Mark McGrouther
© Australian Museum


It is a schooling pelagic species that occurs in tropical inshore waters circumglobally.


In Australia it is known from north-westerm Western Australia around the tropical north of the country and south to northern Queensland. The fish in the image was caught at Lord Howe Island, New South Wales and thus represents a significant range extension for the species (pers. com. W. Smith-Vaniz, April 2006).

The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.


  1. Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
  2. Randall, J.E. 2005. Reef and Shore Fishes of the South Pacific: New Caledonia to Tahiti and the Pitcairn Islands. University of Hawai'i Press. Pp. 584.
  3. Smith-Vaniz, W.F. in Carpenter, K.E. & V.H. Niem. 1999. The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. Volume 4. Bony fishes part 2 (Mugilidae to Carangidae). FAO. Rome Pp. iii-v, 2069-2790.