Banggai Cardinalfish Pterapogon kauderni

Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
The pretty Banggai Cardinalfish is native to coral reefs around the Banggai Islands of Indonesia. There are isolated populations around shallow reefs in a limited geographic area. The overall population is decreasing and classed as endangered.
Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
It is the only species in its genus. No other fish has the patterns and elongated fins of the unmistakable Banggai Cardinal. They grow to some 5-8cm long.
Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
The fish, particulalrly juveniles, hide in the black spines of the Long-spined Sea Urchin. Adult fish form schools and sit almost motionless in front of seagrass, branched coral or rocks in the day, their black stripes, white spots, flowing fins and aggregation giving them good camouflage.
Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
Unlike other big-eyed cardinalfish, they are diurnal. Diet is zooplankton and small invertebrates.
Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
Banggai Cardinalfish
They are "mouth brooders", meaning the male holds the eggs in his mouth to protect them from predators until the eggs hatch. He does not eat during that time (a week or two). Unusually among marine fish, he also protects the young fish fry in his mouth until they grow too big.