Orange Spotted Filefish, also known as Harlequin Filefish, is a type of filefish from the Monacanthidae family. It lives in coral reefs in the Indo-Pacific Oceans.
There is another species called Cantherhines pullus which is also referred to as Orange Spotted Filefish.
Orange Spotted Filefish is light blue with around eight rows of orange-yellow patches running along its body.
Its main food source in the wild is Acropora polyps which it consumes throughout the day. However, its feeding slows down toward evening.
Orange Spotted Filefish is found in clear lagoons and seaward reefs at depths ranging from 0.5 to 30 meters (1.6 to 98 feet).
It usually lives in pairs or small groups near dead corals or algae clumps where it nests.
Orange Spotted Filefish is not reef-safe.
Orange Spotted Filefish Interesting Facts
- Orange Spotted Filefish, also known as Harlequin Filefish, have unique light blue bodies with orange-yellow patches.
- They are monogamous and live in pairs or small groups near dead corals or algae clumps.
- This species grows up to 4.7 inches (12.0 centimeters) in length and has a long, slender snout.
- During courtship, the fish show aggression and form monogamous relationships for mating purposes.
Orange Spotted Filefish Habitat
Orange Spotted Filefish lives in the Indo-Pacific region, from East Africa to Samoa and from the Ryukyu Islands to the southern Great Barrier Reef, New Caledonia, and Tonga.
It is not found in the Red Sea, where it’s replaced by Oxymonacanthus halli. It is a marine species that lives near reefs. It doesn’t migrate and is found at depths of 1 to 35 meters.
This tropical fish thrives in waters with temperatures ranging from 30°N to 24°S and between longitudes of 114°E to 171°E.
Orange Spotted Filefish Physical Characteristics
Size: 4.7 inches (12.0 centimeters)
Orange Spotted Filefish grows up to 4.7 inches (12.0 centimeters) long. It has 2 dorsal spines and 31 to 35 dorsal soft rays, but no anal spines. Instead, it has 29 to 32 anal soft rays.
Males have longer bristles on the tail area compared to other body parts. This fish is green with six or seven rows of orange spots. Its back fin has a black spot or bar at the end.
Males have a black patch with white spots on their bottom flap, while females have only a black flap without white spots.
The first dorsal spine is shorter than its snout and starts above the eye’s rear part, folding into a groove along its back.
Orange Spotted Filefish has a long, slender snout and a small immovable bottom fin called rudiment.
Its tail fin is short and slightly rounded, and its body depth at the start of the bottom fin measures between 3.1 to 3.3 times in relation to its standard length (SL).
Orange Spotted Filefish Reproduction
Orange Spotted Filefish often show aggression during courtship.
They swim together in various groups before the female focuses on one partner. She thrusts repeatedly and pauses, while the male nuzzles her.
The female then lays eggs in the algae, and the male releases sperm next to her. Afterward, they swim back to their territory.
These fish form monogamous relationships for mating purposes or social reasons.