Java Rabbitfish

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The Java Rabbitfish (Siganus javus) is a tropical fish species that belongs to the ‘Rabbitfish/Spinefeet’ fish family Siganidae. These species are unique in that they have a spine at each end of their pelvic fins and three soft rays between. The spines are venomous and wounds can be extremely painful. The body is bluish-white in colour with narrow dark bluish grey stripes on the ventral part of the body that become more irregular until on the dorsal half of the body where they form a reticulum of isolating spots. There is generally a large black spot on the tailfin and yellow colouration around the face. This species is known to occur in the warm waters of the Indo-Pacific region and it has been recorded from the Persian Gulf, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Burma, Andaman Islands, Thailand, Viet Nam, southern China, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu and New Caledonia. This species can be found in coastal habitats, shallow estuaries and quite often in groups on wrecks. It is known to feed on plankton in midwater and the Java Rabbitfish (Siganus javus) grows to a maximum length of approximately 50cm.

Family: Siganidae

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