Plain Cardinalfish, <i>Ostorhinchus apogonides</i> Click to enlarge image
A Plain Cardinalfish at a depth of 12m, off Paradise Resort, Tulamben, Bali, October 2003. The fish is a male that is mouth brooding its eggs. Image: Ian Shaw
© Ian Shaw

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    apogonides
    Genus
    Ostorhinchus
    Family
    Apogonidae
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    10 cm

Introduction

The Plain Cardinalfish is a small yellowish fish with two blue stripes through they eyes.

Identification

The Plain Cardinalfish is mauve to reddish-grey above grading to yellow below. It has a blue-margined dark stripe from the snout to the eye and two blue stripes continuing through they eye and across the operculum. There are blue spots on the sides of the body. The tip of the first dorsal fin is black.

Habitat

The species occurs in coral reef and inshore waters. It is most often seen at depths exceeding 30 m but is infrequently seen in waters as shallow as 2 m in sheltered bays and lagoons.

Distribution

It occurs throughout the tropical Indo-west Pacific.In Australia it is known from the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland and islands of the Coral Sea.

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



Breeding behaviours

Males mouth-brood the eggs.

References

  • Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 292.
  • Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
  • Randall, J.E. 2005. Reef and Shore Fishes of the South Pacific: New Caledonia to Tahiti and the Pitcairn Islands. University of Hawai’i Press. Pp. 584.
  • Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & R.C. Steene. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Crawford House Press. Pp. 557.