Diploprion bifasciatum Click to enlarge image
A Barred Soapfish caught on hook and line at a depth of 10 m, "The Pumpkin Passage", off North Keppel Island, Queensland, October 2005. Image: L. & W. Gathercole
© L. & W. Gathercole

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    bifasciatum
    Genus
    Diploprion
    Family
    Serranidae
    Order
    Perciformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    It grows to about 25 cm in length.

Introduction

The Barred Soapfish can be recognised by its pale to bright yellow colouring, black bar on the head and a wide black bar on it's body. It occurs primarily in tropical inshore and coral reef waters.


Soapfish, Diploprion bifasciatum
A larval Barred Soapfish, Diploprion bifasciatum, approximately 2 cm standard length. The fish was collected in a light trap off Coconut Beach, Lizard Island, January 2012. Image: Christoph Braun
© Christoph Braun

Identification

The Barred Soapfish has a moderately deep body that is mostly covered with small ctenoid scales. There is a deep notch between the spinous and soft-rayed portions of the dorsal fin. The pelvic fins are long, reaching beyond the spinous portion of the anal fin.

The species is pale to bright yellow with a black bar on the head and a wide black bar on the body.

Habitat

The Barred Soapfish is a benthic species that occurs primarily in tropical inshore and coral reef waters.

Distribution

The Barred Soapfish occurs in the Western Pacific. In Australia is known from south-western Western Australia, around the tropical north of the country and south to the central coast of New South Wales.

The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.



References

  1. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.
  2. Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & R.C. Steene. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Crawford House Press. Pp. 557.