SizeMaximum length of 3.1 inches (8 cm)
DietCopepods (planktonic crustaceans), marine worms, mollusks and fish larvae
RangeBanggai Islands of eastern Indonesia
HabitatShallow habitats, coral reefs and bays
- Coloration is silver with three vertical black bands across the body. White dots are present between bars and on all fins except the front dorsal fin.
- These dot patterns are unique to each fish.
- First dorsal fin is tasseled.
- Second dorsal fin, anal fin and caudal fin are elongated.
- Caudal fin is forked.
- Maximum length of 3.1 inches (8 cm).
The banggai cardinalfish feeding behavior decreases as the day goes on and ends around sunset.
- Diet mainly consists of copepods (planktonic crustaceans). However, this species is an opportunistic feeder and will also eat marine worms, mollusks and fish larvae.
- Feeding behavior decreases as the day goes on and ends around sunset.
- May play an important role in coral reef habitats by eating larvae of parasites that target other fish in the habitat.
- Occurs in the Banggai Islands of eastern Indonesia.
- Typically found in shallow habitats, often with sandy bottoms and sea grass. Can also be found in coral reefs and bays where water is relatively still.
- Oviparous, or egg-laying species.
- Female chooses a male mate, and together the two fish establish and guard a territory.
- Engages in paternal mouthbrooding; after the female spawns up to 75 eggs, the male holds and guards the eggs in a pouch in the mouth.
- Eggs hatch in about 20 days and develop another 10 days before being released from the mouth.
- During the brooding period, the male does not eat; it will turn the eggs inside its mouth and expels dead eggs.
- “Endangered” on the IUCN Red List.
- Found only in the Banggai Islands, this specie’s highly restricted geographical range increases its vulnerability to threats.
- Overexploitation caused by the commercial aquarium trade is the main threat to this species.
- Habitat degradation due to pollution and the illegal use of dynamite is also a threat.
- Usually lives in groups of up to six fish, though a group of 500 has been recorded.
- May associate with bottom-dwelling organisms such as sea anemones, sea urchins and corals.