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Species: Neoniphon vexillarium, Dusky Squirrelfish

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body: wide, dark-edged silver stripes
spiny D pink, red spots after spine tips
inside pectoral base - dark

Neoniphon vexillarium (Poey, 1860)

Dusky Squirrelfish

Body oblong; snout pointed; eye very large; mouth small, oblique; lower jaw not projecting; edges of bones of operculum and under eye with series of slender spines; 1-2 enlarged spines on edge of operculum; a long stout spine at corner of preopercle; 10-14 lower gill rakers; dorsal fin with XI spines, a distinct gap between last spine and first ray of soft dorsal, front soft rays not elongate; 13 (12-14) soft rays; anal with IV spines, 3rd spine extremely long and stout, 9 (8-10); pectoral 15 (14-16); pelvics I, 7; tail forked; scales large, very rough; 41-45 on lateral line.

Brownish red; body with dark lines bordering wide silver stripes; spiny dorsal pink, with red spots after spine tips; tail with red upper and lower margins; inside pectoral base black to brown.

Reaches 17.2 cm.

Lives on reefs.

Depth range: 0-25 m.

Bermuda to the S Caribbean.

Note: Recently moved from the genus Sargocentron.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
  • Sea-stars/cucumbers/urchins
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • GC endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 17.2
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 25