Animal Species:Longfin Batfish, Platax pinnatus (Linnaeus, 1758)
The Longfin Batfish is silver-grey to brown with a dark bar through the eye and another through the pectoral fins. The dorsal and anal fins are greatly elongated.
Standard Common Name
Batfish, Butterfly-fish, Leaf-fish, Pinnate Batfish, Shaded Batfish, Sunfish, Turbot
The Longfin Batfish is silver-grey to brown with a dark bar through the eye and another through the pectoral fins. It has a protruding snout. Juveniles are black. The body and median fins are outlined in orange. The dorsal and anal fins are greatly elongated.
The species grows to 35 cm in length.
The Longfin Batfish occurs throughout the tropical Indo-West Pacific. In Australia it is known from off central Western Australia, around the 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. Click on the map for detailed information. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.
Distribution by collection data
The species occurs in inshore and coral reef waters.
Feeding and Diet
With reference to batfishes in general, Randal et al. 1997 states, "Their diet consists largely of benthic invertebrates and zooplankton".
- Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 292.
- 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.
- Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
- Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & R.C. Steene. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Crawford House Press. Pp. 557.
Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology