Common Pandora - Pagellus Erythrinus
Latin: Pagellus Erythrinus
English: Common Pandora
French: Pageot Commun
Italian: Pagello Fragolino, Arboro
Spanish: La Breca
Croatian: Arbun, Arbor, Ribun, Fag
About: Pagellus erythrinus or the Common Pandora, is a fish of the Sparidae family.
It has a slim, oval body covered with small scales (it's face included). The eyes are relatively big, but smaller than those of Pagellus bogaraveo and Pagellus acarne. It is silver in color with some pink and red tinge, particularly on its back and with stomach often being almost entirely silverish. A typical specimen measures 15-20cm (6-8 inches), but it can reach as much as 60cm in length and 3 kg in weight (~6.5 pounds).
The common pandora is a hermaphrodite, spending the first two years of its life as a female, when (at length of approximately 17-18cm) changes sex and spends rest of life as a male. Spawning occurs in April and May.
Although it is omnivorous, it feeds mainly on smaller fish and benthic invertebrates.
Habitat: Common Pandora can be found in the Atlantic Ocean, all the way from Scandinavia to Cape Verde. Also, it can be found in the Mediterranean and the North Sea at depths from 15m to 200m.
Fishing period: It can be caught all year long, but much better in warmer months, early in the morning and in the evening.
Fishing rigs and tackle: Longline, handline or rod fishing, but it can also be caught with various nets and traps. When hooked, it puts a nice fight, giving impression of a larger fish.
Cuisine: It is a popular food fish in Mediterranean countries, with tender white flesh. In April, it is full of fish roe and meat is of somewhat lower quality. Smaller fish can be fried - often, it is prepared in fish stew or barbequed, especially larger specimens.