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Species: Neoniphon suborbitalis, Tinsel squirrelfish

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silvery-pink, dark scale edges
preoperculum: large spine

Neoniphon suborbitalis (Gill, 1863)

Tinsel squirrelfish

Body ovate;  mouth small, oblique; snout pointed; lower jaw not projecting; eye very large;  edges of bones of operculum and under eye with series of slender spines, a  long, stout spine at lower rear corner of preoperculum; 1-2 enlarged spines on edge of operculum, a long stout spine at corner of preopercle; dorsal fin with XI spines, notched to the body between last spine and first ray of soft dorsal, 13-14; anal with IV spines, 3rd spine extremely long and stout, 9; tail forked, symmetrical; scales large, very rough; lateral-line scales 36-38.

Head and body silvery with rosy to violet hue; scale margins dark, especially on upper body.

Maximum size to about 25 cm.

Inhabits rocky caverns and coral crevices.

Depth: 1-25 m.

Gulf of California to Ecuador, including the offshore islands.

Nota: Previously in the genus Sargocentron.

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  • Marine Only
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom + water column
  • Near Bottom
  • Bottom
  • Water column
  • Rocks
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Reef only
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic worms
  • Pelagic crustacea
  • Data
Egg Type
  • No data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
  • East Pacific endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • All species
  • Island (s)
  • TEP endemic
  • Continent
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Northern Tropical (Mexican Province to Nicaragua + Revillagigedos)
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
  • North Temperate (Californian Province &/or Northern Gulf of California)
  • Northern Subtropical (Cortez Province + Sinaloan Gap)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Least concern
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 25
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 25