|Dorsal fin spines VII+I, rays 18-21; anal fin spines II+I, rays 15-18; large head; early development of 2 series of preopercular spines and median supraoccipital crest; relatively deep-bodied.
Preflexion: Heavy on middorsal line, with development, expanding ventrad along epaxial myosepta; scattered on head; on snout; distally on lips; ventrally on gut and body; few posteriorly on lateral midline anterior to caudal peduncle; internally dorsally on gas bladder.
Flexion: Scattered on head and body ending anterior to caudal peduncle, light on gut; lacking under eye; on pelvic fin and anal pterygiophores; dashes beginning even with gut on dorsal midline and on lateral midline ending anterior to caudal peduncle.
Postflexion: Scattered on entire head and body; on first dorsal fin and pelvic fin; on pectoral fin base and proximally on rays; anteriorly on anal fin; proximally on caudal fin; silver coloration beginning on cheek and gut (gold in fresh specimens).
Transformation: 5-6 vertical bars forming; may have a blotch on each caudal lobe.
Juvenile: Silver with about 13 vertical bars alternating between heavy and light, beginning across eye, ending on caudal peduncle.
Sequence of fin development: principal caudal fin rays, second dorsal fin and anal fin, first dorsal fin, pelvic fin, procurrent dorsal fin rays, pectoral fin.