Butterflyfish – 4 species

  • Butterflyfish Schooling Bannerfish
  • Butterflyfish Moorish Idol
  • Raccoon Butterflyfish

The Butterflyfishes are a group of tropical marine fish of the family Chaetodontidae. There is 120 types of Butterflyfish spread all over the world.

Nevertheless you’ll have more chance to find them :

-Pacific Ocean.

-Atlantic Ocean.

-Indian Ocean.

Mostly found on the reefs, the Butterflyfish frequent waters less than 18 m.

Butterflyfish mostly range from 12 to 22 cm.

This species are especially territorial, forming pairs, they use to attack bigger fishes if they go into their territory.

They are also curious fishes who usually come close to the divers.

During the night, the Butterflyfishes use to hide themselves in a hole close to reef until the sunrise.

You can find them in Phuket:

They eat :

  • Algae.
  • Plankton.

Funny fact: Butterfly fish is named that way because of the attractive coloration of their body.

Schooling Bannerfish

Schooling Bannerfish swimming close to the reefs

Schooling banner fish swimming close to the reefs into the Ocean,

It has a base color of white with two wide black stripes. The soft dorsal and caudal fins are yellow.

The Schooling Bannerfish are almost identical to the Black & White Heniochus Butterflyfish Heniochus acuminatus.

This species is considered reef safe with caution.

They use to eat:

  • leave corals.
  • anemones.
  • gorgonians.
  • shrimps.
  • small invertebrates.

You can find them in:

Funny fact: The Schooling bannerfish is very similar to the longfin bannerfish and the “Moorish Idol”. This is why it is also called False Moorish Idol.

Moorish Idol

Butterflyfish Moorish Idol

Moorish Idol swimming close to the reef-Butterflyfish

A common inhabitant of tropical to subtropical reefs and lagoons, the Moorish idol is notable for its wide distribution throughout the Indo-Pacific. A number of butterflyfishes closely look like the Moorish idol.

The fish may be found at depths from 3 to 180 m.

They use to eat:

  • Sponge
  • Coral
  • Polyps
  • Tunicates

Often seen alone, Moorish idols also form pairs.

You can find them in:

Cooperband Butterflyfish

copperband butterfly fish

Copperband Butterflyfish laying on the floor

This species are found in reefs in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

These fish are easily identified by the yellow banding and long muzzle.

It has a false eyespot on the rear of the dorsal fin.

Copperband butterflyfish are found at depths of 1−25 metres either alone or in pairs

They use to eat

  • Sponge
  • Coral
  • Polyps
  • Tunicates

You can find them in:

Raccoon Butterflyfish

Raccoon butterflyfish swimming close to the reef

Raccoon butterflyfish swimming close to the reef

This species are found in reefs in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

There is at least a vestigial form of the raccoon mask, with a white space between the dark crown and eye areas.

The raccoon butterflyfish is generally not aggressive towards other fish.

They use to eat

  • Sponge
  • Soft Coral
  • Algae
  • Tunicates

You can find them in:


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