The male Moontail Bullseye (Priacanthus hamrur) can reach a maximum length of 45 cm. The body is orange to red or silver, or silver with broad red bands. Often it has a row of about fifteen small dark spots along the lateral line. The fins are red to light pink. The pelvic fins are very large. The caudal fin has a concave margin which may be lunate. The eyes are large. The mouth is oblique with a protruding lower jaw.
Dorsal fin with 10 spines and 13-15 rays. Anal fin with 3 spines and 13-16 rays. Pectoral rays 17-20. Body depth 2.5-2.9 in standard length.
Well compressed body. snout long. Posterior and lower margins of preopercle finely serrated. Caudal fin emarginate. Colour: Usually uniform red to deep red with a series of about 15 small dark spots along lateral line. Median and pelvic fins dusky red. A black spot at base of first 3 pelvic rays. Capable of quickly altering to pinkish silver with six red bars on body and one extending ventrally from eyes.
Moontail Bullseye's facts
Did you know?
The Moontail Bullseye obtain their name from their large eye and their crescent or lunar shaped tail.
The Moontail Bullseye have amazing colour change abilities.
Moontail Bullseye's Behavior & Ecology
They are generally shy and will usually back away from a diver if he gets too close, generally found in outer reef slopes and deep lagoon pinnacles from 8 to at least 80 m. During the day they will normally be under an overhang, or in a cave, sometimes with Squirrelfish or Soldierfish. During the night when they are out feeding they are usually always solitary.
Moontail Bullseye's Feeding
The Moontail Bullseye are nocturnal feeders. They feed mainly on small crustaceans, small fishes and large plankton.
Moontail Bullseye's Reproduction
Little is known of their breeding habits, but they are thought to spawn into the water table where the larvae mature.
Moontail Bullseye's Relationship with Humans
This fish is caught by subsistence fishermen and sometimes they may be seen in public aquariums.
Moontail Bullseye habitat
Priacanthus hamrur occurs over the continental slope near reefs and rocky areas to depths of about 250 m, but most common from 30 to 50 m (Starnes 2001, Sivakami et al. 2001). This species prefers outer reef slopes, deep lagoon pinnacles and more sheltered areas. This species forms small aggregations and sometimes schools in oceanic locations and also occurs under ledges or near coral heads during the day (Allen and Erdmann 2012). This species diet consists of small fishes, crustaceans and other small invertebrates (Starnes 1984). The maximum recorded is 45 cm total length (TL) (Heemstra 1986). The Bertalanffy's growth functions for this species: L∞ = 360 mm, K= 0.64 per year (Bombay waters) (Chakraborty and Vidyasagar 1996). The size at sexual maturity for males and females are 18.0-19.0 cm and 19.1-20.0 cm, respectively, and fecundity ranged from 155,800 to 722,313 with an average of 380,071 (Sivakami et al. 2001).
Moontail Bullseye threats
This species is taken in moderate numbers in a variety of mixed-species fisheries.