Fact File:

Common Name(s): Dab

Scientific Name:
Limanda limanda

Usual Size:20-25 cm

UK Record Weights from rod/line:

Shore:2-09-08 Port Talbot, Glamorgan ML Watts 1936

Boat:2-12-04 Gairloch, Wester Ross R Islip 1975

MAFF Minimum Size: Shore: Boat:
NFSA minimum size, shore: 23 cm, boat: 23 cm

White underneath and brown on the upper surface, with rough scales. The lateral line is strongly curved above the pectoral fin.

Breeding occurs in depths of 20-40 m - during early spring (Channel) to early summer (nothern North Sea). Females produce in the region of 100,000 eggs. Initially pelagic, the young move to the bottom before fully metamorphosed, which occurs at about 16 mm. Dabs reach sexual maturity at 2-3 years, when around 15 cm long.

The dab prefers sandy ground, often close inshore.

Brittlestars, small crustaceans, worms and molluscs. May sometimes take small fish.

Widespread throughout UK waters.

Additional Notes:
The flesh is tasty, and being commercially fished, is widely available.

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