Molecular markers, such as microsatellite loci, are very important in managing and improving breeding stocks as well as in understanding the genetic structure and conservation of natural populations. In this study, we report a set of 15 microsatellite loci isolated from Pagellus bogaraveo and tested in five sparid species by cross-amplification (Sparus aurata, Dicentrarchus labrax, Diplodus puntazzo, Dentex dentex and Pagellus erythrinus). Preliminary analyses of variability were carried out on samples of every species in order to evaluate the potential use of these loci to conduct various genetic population or pedigree analyses. Amplifications succeeded for 12 out of the 15 loci in P. bogaraveo, seven for D. puntazzo, eight for S. aurata, six for D. labrax, two for D. dentex and one for S. erythrinus. No departures from Hardy–Weinberg equilibrium were found at sample level, although single departures for three loci in two species were detected. Highly promising values of variability for pedigree and relatedness analyses were detected for several loci microsatellite within the species. Allelic characteristics, showed for three microsatellite loci, allow unequivocal differentiation among P. bogaraveo, S. aurata and D. puntazzo individuals.