The Gillblotch Leatherjacket is usually seen in shallow lagoons and coral reefs. It can be very common in coral reef habitats but is secretive and is not usually noticed.
The species can be recognised by its orange-red caudal fin, the dark blotch over the gill opening and narrow black lines on the sides of the body.
It occurs at depths of 1 m to 20 m.
The species occurs in tropical marine waters of the Indo-Pacific, from East Africa, north to Japan, south to Australia and east to Tonga.
In Australia the Gillblotch Leatherjacket is known from the north-western coast of Western Australia and from northern Queensland to southern New South Wales.
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.
- Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 292.
- Allen, G.R. & R. Swainston. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 201.
- 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.