Banggai cardinalfish

Banggai cardinalfish (Pterapogon kauderni) is a very sophisticated looking fish with its shimmering silver body highlighted by vertical black stripes and white spots with elegant long fins. Each pattern is unique to individual fish and can be used to distinguish specimens.

The Banggai Cardinalfish got its name from its native region off the coast of Indonesia. They can be spot wandering in groups that consist of up to 500 individuals in shallow water with depths of 1.5 to 2.5 meters, near the reef, sea anemone or sea grass bed. Considering the fragile body structure, going deeper than two and a half meters, none of its species could survive. They also prefer to live in calm waters and warm temperature from 28 to 31 degrees Celsius.

Another interesting fact about this specie is their capability to hide around the spines of sea urchins without getting stung.

The specie exhibits an uncommon and rare reproduction, where female initiated the courtship. Upon choosing a partner, the female separates the potential mate from other individuals in the group by making a spherical spawning spot. The male provides the parental care, where they incubate the eggs in their mouth and release when they are fully formed juveniles.

Banggai is differentiated from other cardinalfish by its tasseled first dorsal fin, elongated anal and second dorsal fin rays, and deeply forked caudal fin. This specie can grow up to 8 centimeters (3 inches) in total length and to distinguish the gender, males have larger mouth gape.

Ericka Morillo By Ericka Morillo Marine Life