Whitetail dascyllus

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Whitetail dascyllus
Reef0951 - Flickr - NOAA Photo Library.jpg
Dascyllus aruanus off Guam
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Family: Pomacentridae
Genus: Dascyllus
D. aruanus
Binomial name
Dascyllus aruanus
  • Tetradrachmum arcuatum Cantor, 1850
  • Chaetodon aruanus Linnaeus, 1758
  • Tetradrachmum aruanum (Linnaeus, 1758)
  • Chaetodon arcuanus Gmelin, 1789
  • Pomacentrus emamo Lesson, 1831
  • Dascyllus blochii Castelnau, 1875
  • Pomacentrus trifasciatus De Vis, 1884
  • Pomacentrus devisi D.S. Jordan & Seale, 1906
  • Abudefduf caroli Curtiss, 1938

Dascyllus aruanus, known commonly as the whitetail dascyllus or humbug damselfish among other vernacular names, is a species of marine fish in the family Pomacentridae.[1]


Whitetail dascyllus is up to 10 centimetres (3.9 in) in length but its common size is 6 centimetres (2.4 in) and is white with three black vertical bars.[2]


Associated with coral reefs, most usually in groups above Acropora coral heads. Males may be aggressive against other fish while they tend eggs.[2]


Whitetail dascyllus is widespread throughout the tropical waters of the Indo-Pacific region, Red Sea included.[1][3] However, the species has recently been split with D. aruanus found in the Pacific and Forsskål's 1775 name Dascyllus abudafur being resurrected for the Red Sea and Indian Ocean populations.[4]

In aquaculture[edit]

They are called aquarium 'Starter fish' as they are quite tolerant of variable conditions and aid in conditioning the tank environment for less hardy fish. These fish have been reared in captivity. They can be territorial with other fish.


  1. ^ a b "Demoiselle a trois bandes noirs Dascyllus aruanus (Linnaeus, 1758)" (in French). Données d'Observations pour la Reconnaissance et l'Identification de la faune et la flore Subaquatiques. Retrieved 2 October 2018.
  2. ^ a b Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2018). "Dascyllus aruanus" in FishBase. June 2018 version.
  3. ^ "demoiselle à trois bandes noires Dascyllus aruanus décrit par Linnaeus, 1758". Sous Les Mers. Retrieved 2 October 2018.
  4. ^ Borsa, P.; Sembiring, A.; Fauvelot, C.; Chen, W.-J. (2014). "Resurrection of Indian Ocean humbug damselfish, Dascyllus abudafur (Forsskål) from synonymy with its Pacific Ocean sibling, Dascyllus aruanus (L.)". Comptes Rendus Biologies. 337 (12): 709–716. doi:10.1016/j.crvi.2014.09.001. PMID 25433563.