Orbicular Batfish (Habitat, Diet, and Appearance)

Orbicular Batfish

Orbicular Batfish is a type of marine fish that belongs to the Ephippidae family, which includes spadefishes and other batfishes.

It’s also known by several other names like Cooper Batfish, Circular Batfish, Round Batfish, Narrow-Banded Batfish, and Orbic Batfish.

This fish species is found in the Indo-Pacific region but has also been spotted in the western Atlantic Ocean.

They usually live in shallow coastal waters or deeper, somewhat silty areas. They are often found near deep shipwrecks.

Adult orbicular batfish are either solitary or form small groups. Sometimes they even gather in large schools in certain locations.

Younger ones prefer staying among mangroves and sheltered lagoons while adults move to open waters over sandy areas of deep lagoons, channels, and seaward reefs up to 30 meters deep.

Their diet consists of algae, small fishes, and invertebrates. However, they are not reef-safe for aquariums.

Orbicular Batfish Interesting Facts

  • Orbicular batfish thrives in warm tropical waters and can be found near deep shipwrecks, mangroves, and sheltered lagoons.
  • Adults have a unique appearance with a round, flat body, yellowish-silver color, and dark bands near the eyes.
  • Their diet consists of algae, small fish, and invertebrates but they’re not considered reef safe due to potential negative impacts on coral reefs.

Orbicular Batfish Habitat

Orbicular batfish is found in the Indo-Pacific region. Its habitat range includes the Red Sea, East Africa and the Persian Gulf to Japan, Australia and New Caledonia.

It has also been seen off Florida’s coast in the Western Central Atlantic.

This fish prefers marine and brackish environments near reefs with depths of 5 to 30 meters (16 to 98 feet).

It thrives in warm tropical waters between 72°F to 82°F (22°C to 28°C) and lives between latitudes of 32°N to 35°S and longitudes of 20°E to 130°W.

Water Temperature:72°F to 82°F (22°C to 28°C)
Water pH:Unknown
Water Hardness:Unknown

Orbicular Batfish Physical Characteristics

Size: 23.6 inches (60.0 centimeters)

Orbicular batfish grow up to 23.6 inches (60.0 centimeters) long. It has 5 dorsal spines, 34 to 39 dorsal soft rays, 3 anal spines, and 25 to 29 anal soft rays.

Adults have a yellowish-silver or dusky color with dark bands near the eyes and head. They sometimes have small black spots on their body.

Their fins are yellowish with black edges at the back. Young orbicular batfish are reddish-brown with irregular black spots and white markings on their body.

The tail fin is clear except for its base which is reddish-brown. The body of this fish is round and flat, making it look compressed.

Its head length is about three times shorter than its body length. Larger adults have a concave snout profile and a bony area between their eyes.

Their jaws have bands of thin, flattened teeth that have three points (tricuspid).

They don’t have teeth on certain parts of their mouth like palatines or vomer areas, and there are five pores on each side of their lower jaw.

The preopercle part is smooth without any spines.

Orbicular Batfish Scientific Classification

Scientific Name:Platax orbicularis
Also Known As:Orbicular Batfish, Cooper Batfish, Circular Batfish, Round Batfish, Narrow-Banded Batfish, Orbic Batfish
Conservation Status:Least Concern

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