Paracirrhites hemistictus (Günther, 1874)
Whitespot hawkfish
photo by Randall, J.E.

Family:  Cirrhitidae (Hawkfishes)
Max. size:  29 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  reef-associated; marine; depth range 0 - 20 m
Distribution:  Eastern Indian Ocean: Cocos-Keeling and Christmas islands. Pacific Ocean: all islands of Oceania except Hawaii and Easter Island. Also known from the Ogasawara Islands (Ref. 559). Remains unreported from any continental shore or any of the large islands of the Indo-Malayan region.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 10-10; Dorsal soft rays (total): 11-11; Anal spines: 3-3; Anal soft rays: 6-6. Occurs in two basic color morphs: a light phase with a broad white longitudinal band and a maroon to black phase (Paracirrhites polystictus) with a conspicuous white blotch on each side (Ref. 37816). Description: Characterized by having unbranched uppermost and lower seven pectoral rays; absence of palatine teeth; finely serrate posterior margin of preopercle; greatest depth of body 2.8-3.2 in SL (Ref. 90102).
Biology:  An uncommon species that inhabits exposed reef fronts and outer reef slopes to a depth of about 18 m where it perches on rocks and corals. Feeds on small crustaceans and fishes (Ref. 89972). Absent from most large continental islands (Ref. 9710). Minimum depth reported taken from Ref. 128797. Solitary (Ref 90102).
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 03 March 2015 Ref. (126983)
Threat to humans:  harmless

Source and more info: For personal, classroom, and other internal use only. Not for publication.