Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    monospilus
    Genus
    Ostorhinchus
    Family
    Apogonidae
    Order
    Perciformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    The species grows to about 7.5 cm in length.

Introduction

The Moluccan Cardinalfish changes colour according to the time of day. It is often silvery during the day and brown to reddish at night.

Identification

The Moluccan Cardinalfish has a whitish spot behind the base of the second dorsal fin. The species name ‘monospilus’ means ‘one spot’. The fish is often silvery during the day and brown to reddish at night.

Habitat

The Moluccan Cardinalfish occurs in coral reef and inshore waters.

Distribution

The species occurs in the tropical Western Pacific. In Australia it is known from north-western Western Australia to the northern Great Barrier Reef, Queensland. Kuiter (2000) reports juveniles as far south as Sydney Harbour.

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

Ostorhinchus monospilus

Ozcam map of Moluccan Cardinalfish specimens in the Australian Museums. http://ozcam.ala.org.au/occurrences/search?q=Ostorhinchus%20monospilus&zoom=off#mapView

Other behaviours and adaptations

The Moluccan Cardinalfish is a nocturnal species.

References

  1. Fraser, T. H., Randall, J. E. & G. R. Allen. 2002. Clarification of the cardinalfishes (Apogonidae) previously confused with Apogon moluccensis Valenciennes, with a description of a related new species. Raffles Bulletin of Zoology. 50(1): 175-184.
  2. 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.
  3. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437. (as A. moluccensis)
  4. Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & R.C. Steene. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Crawford House Press. Pp. 557. (as A. moluccensis)