Unknown Porcupinefish Click to enlarge image
An unknown Porcupinefish at a depth of 7m, Marsa Shagra Bay, Marsa Alam, southern Egypt, February 2007. Image: S. Bogorodsky
© S. Bogorodsky

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    sp.
    Genus
    Diodon
    Family
    Diodontidae
    Order
    Tetraodontiformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia

Introduction

The three images on this page were sent to Jeff Leis by Sergei Bogorodsky in February 2007. They show three different fish photographed in shallow water in southern Egypt.



Identification

The fish resembles the Blackblotched Porcupinefish, Diodon liturosus, but has small dark spots on the dorsal, pectoral, anal and caudal fins. The fins of the Blackblotched Porcupinefish lack spots. The three fish in the images have different shaped blotches, and the fish in the lowermost photograph has very limited spotting restricted to the fin bases.

The fish may be rare colour variants, or possibly hybrids between the Blackblotched Porcupinefish and the Black-spotted Porcupinefish, Diodon hystrix. Alternatively they may be a new species.

To learn more about this fish, specimens are required for examination.

Distribution

The fish were photographed in shallow water at Marsa Alam, in southern Egypt, about 300 km south of Hurghada. The species seems rather rare in the Red Sea and may not extend to the northernmost portion of Red Sea near Elat.

References

  1. Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 292.
  2. Leis, J.M. 2006. Nomenclature and distribution of the species of the porcupinefish family Diodontidae (Pisces, Teleostei). Memoirs of Museum Victoria. 63(1): 77-90.