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Pyramid Butterfly


Pyramid Butterfly
Hemitaurichthys zoster
Place of origin: 
Western Indian Ocean
Widespread Indian Ocean, ranging to southern Java. A schooling planktivore, usually feeding along reef slopes and drop-offs at various depths from near surface to about 30m in pursuit of zooplankton. Readily identified by their 'humbug' colours - the black body with a broad white band and white tail. Length to 18cm.

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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