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Banded Butterfly


Banded Butterfly
Chaetodon striatus
Place of origin: 
Tropical Western Atlantic, commonly occurring in the Gulf of Mexico and West Indies. Ranges north to Massachusetts and south to Brazil and St Paul's Rocks, and the southern form is slightly different in its markings. Occurs on various reef habitats at shallow depths to about 20m. Small juveniles have a white-edged ocellus that gradually disappears with growth. Readily identified by the close-set bands on the body. Length to 15cm.

The members of the family Chaetodontidae, popularly know as butterflyfishes, coralfishes and bannerfishes. Most species of butterflyfish live in the warm tropical seas of the Indo-Pacific (about 90%) with the remainder in the Atlantic. Only a few species are found in subtropical waters, bordering onto subtemperate zones. The butterflyfish have a highly compressed body in which the back is raised , forming an elongate-oval to near circular shape in some; a small protactible mouth with brush-like teeth in the jaws; a continuous dorsal fin with strong and sharp spines in the anterior section, followed by a large-surface soft part; an anal fin mirroring the soft part of the dorsal fin , headed by 3-5 strong spines, of which the 2nd is often greatly enlarged.

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