Animal Species:Pilotfish, Naucrates ductor (Linnaeus, 1758)
The Pilotfish is a circum-tropical species that can be recognised by is pattern of dark cross bands.
The species grows to 70 cm in length.
It is found worldwide in tropical and some temparate marine waters.
The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Click on the map for detailed information. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.
Adults are often found in inshore waters swimming alongside larger predatory fishes. They feed on scraps of the predators prey. Juveniles are often encountered swimming under floating items such as seaweed.
- Hoese, D.F., Bray, D.J., Paxton, J.R. & G.R. Allen. 2006. Fishes. In Beesley, P.L. & A. Wells. (eds) Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Volume 35. ABRS & CSIRO Publishing: Australia. parts 1-3, pages 1-2178.
- Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & R.C. Steene. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Crawford House Press. Pp. 557.
Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology