Striped Large-eye Bream [Gnathodentex aureolineatus]

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Striped Large-eye Bream, Gnathodentex aureolineatus. Easily recognized from a yellow blotch on the back. Inhabits subtidal reef flats, lagoons, and seaward reefs. May be solitary or in groups. Sometimes forms aggregations of about a hundred or more individuals. Feeds at night on benthic invertebrates like crabs and gastropods, occasionally on small fish. Indo-Pacific: East Africa to the Tuamoto Islands (excluding the Hawaiian Islands), north to Japan, south to Australia. Recently reported from Norfolk Island. Wikipedia doesn’t have an article on this fish.

 Pictures: Cook Islands by Sami Salmenkivi

Spottailed Squirrelfish [Sargocentron caudimaculatum]

soldier fish

Spottailed Squirrelfish or Silverspot Squirrelfish, Sargocentron caudimaculatum is one of the most common of the squirrelfishes that occurs in outer reef areas, also encountered in lagoons and drop-offs from less than 2 to 40 m; either solitary or in groups. Nocturnal, feeds mainly on benthic crabs and shrimps.

 Pictures: Papua, Indonesia by Sami Salmenkivi

Fivelined Cardinalfish [Cheilodipterus quinquelineatus]

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Fivelined Cardinalfish, Cheilodipterus quinquelineatus has black stripes on white body and a distinct yellow tail with a black spot. Inhabits reef flats and lagoon and seaward reefs to a depth of 40 m or more. Occurs singly or in small to large aggregations, taking shelter in dark crevices, branched coral, under ledges, and among the spines of Diadema setosum. Nocturnal species. Feeds on small crustaceans and gastropods, also on small fishes.

 Pictures: Papua, Indonesia by Sami Salmenkivi

Teardrop Butterflyfish [Chaetodon unimaculatus]

teardrop butterflyfish

The Teardrop ButterflyfishChaetodon unimaculatus, is a species of butterflyfish (family Chaetodontidae). In the Indian Ocean it is replaced by the Yellow Teardrop Butterflyfish (C. interruptus), now considered to be a separate species but previously included in C. unimaculatus as a subspecies. In its subgenus Lepidochaetodon – sometimes considered a separate genus– it is only distantly related to species such as the Sunburst Butterflyfish (C. kleinii) and the Tahiti Butterflyfish (C. trichrous).

 Pictures: at Cook Islands by Sami Salmenkivi

Pyramid Butterflyfish [Hemitaurichthys polylepis]

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The Pyramid Butterflyfish (Hemitaurichthys polylepis) is a species of butterflyfish in the genus Hemitaurichthys.
The butterflyfish can grow up to 18cm in length. The Pyramid Butterflyfish is usually seen in depths between 3 m and 60 m in outer reef areas close to drop-offs. It often forms large shoals containing hundreds of individuals all swimming high in the water column feeding on plankton.

This species occurs in tropical marine waters of the Eastern Indian Ocean and Western and Central Pacific, from South-east Asia, Christmas Island and Coco-Keeling Atoll, north to Japan, south to Australia and east to the Hawaiian and Pitcairn Islands. In Australia it is known from the north-western coast of Western Australia, the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland and northern New South Wales.

This butterflyfish family contains a colorful collection of fishes with diverse body patterns. This butterflyfish bears a white pyramid-shaped patch on each side. As it grows its head changes color form yellow to brown. (text source: Wikipedia)

 

Pictures: Misool Islands, Raja Ampat, Papua, Indonesia by Sami Salmenkivi

Panda butterflyfish [Chaetodon adiergastos]

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The Philippine Butterflyfish or Panda butterflyfish, Chaetodon adiergastos, is a species of butterflyfish (family Chaetodontidae). It is found in the western Pacific, from the Ryukyu Islands and Taiwan to Java and northwestern Australia.

It grows to a maximum length of 20 cm (nearly 8 in). The body is white with diagonal brown stripes on the sides. The dorsal, caudal, anal and pelvic fins are yellow. There are rounded broad black bands on the face, covering the eye, but not continuous from one side of the body to the other but with a separate black spot centered on the forehead.
It belongs to the large subgenus Rabdophorus which might warrant recognition as a distinct genus. In this group, it appears to belong to a loose group including such species as the Black Butterflyfish (C. flavirostris), Diagonal Butterflyfish (C. fasciatus), Raccoon Butterflyfish (C. lunula) and perhaps also the unusual Red-tailed Butterflyfish (C. collare). Although the coloration of this group varies quite a lot, they are all largish butterflyfishes with an oval outline, and most have a pattern of ascending oblique stripes on the flanks. Except in the Red-tailed Butterflyfish, there is at least a vestigial form of the “raccoon” mask, with a white space between the dark crown and eye areas.

The Philippine Butterflyfish is found in coral reefs at depths of 3-25 m and occurs in pairs or groups, usually near soft coral. Juveniles are solitary and found on shallow protected reefs or in estuaries.

Pictures: Misool Islands, Raja Ampat, Papua, Indonesia by Sami Salmenkivi