Kuhlia mugil

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Kuhlia mugil
Kuhliidae - Kuhlia mugil.JPG
Kuhlia mugil
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Family: Kuhliidae
Genus: Kuhlia
Species: K. mugil
Binomial name
Kuhlia mugil
(J. R. Forster, 1801)
  • Sciaena mugil J. R. Forster, 1801
  • Dules taeniurus G. Cuvier, 1829
  • Kuhlia taeniura (G. Cuvier, 1829)
  • Perca argentea J. W. Bennett, 1830
  • Dules argenteus (J. W. Bennett, 1830)
  • Dules bennetti Bleeker, 1853
  • Kuhlia arge D. S. Jordan & Bollman, 1890
  • Kuhlia sterneckii Steindachner, 1898
  • Dules taeniurus malpeloensis Fowler, 1944

Kuhlia mugil, the barred flagtail or the five-bar flagtail, is a species of flagtail belonging to the family Kuhliidae.


This species can reach 40 cm (16 in) in standard length, though most do not exceed 20 cm (7.9 in) in total length.[2] Body is elongate and compressed, eyes are large and the mouth is oblique, with a projecting lower jaw. The basic body color is silvery, but the moderately forked caudal fin is white with two black stripes across each lobe and a median blackish stripe. Also the soft portion of the dorsal fin shows a blackish band. This flagtail has 10 dorsal spines, 10-11 dorsal soft rays, 3 anal spines and 10-12 anal soft rays.[2]

It feeds on small fishes and planktonic crustaceans.[2] This species is of minor importance commercially, being often used as bait to catch other types of fish. It is also popular for display in public aquaria.


Kuhlia mugil is native to brackish and marine waters of the Indian Ocean and the Tropical Eastern Pacific Ocean, from Red Sea and East Africa to southern Japan, New South Wales and Lord Howe Island, excluding Hawaii.[2]


This species occurs on reefs at depths of from 3 to 18 m (9.8 to 59.1 ft), where they form tightly packed schools. Young fish can also be found in tide pools. This species has also been reported occasionally from estuaries but never from fresh waters.[2]


  1. ^ Hoese, D. & Mailautoka, K. 2012. Kuhlia mugil. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.1. <www.iucnredlist.org Archived 2014-06-27 at the Wayback Machine.>. Downloaded on 19 October 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d e FishBase


  • Randall, J.E. and H.A. Randall (2001) Review of the fishes of the genus Kuhlia (Perciformes: Kuhliidae) of the Central Pacific., Pac. Sci. 55(3):227-256.
  • Randall, J.E. (1995) Coastal fishes of Oman., University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, Hawaii. 439 p.
  • Talwar, P.K. and A.G. Jhingran (1991) Inland fishes of India and adjacent countries. Volume 2., A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam.
  • Eschmeyer, W.N. (ed.) (2005) Catalog of fishes
  • Maugé, L.A. (1986) Kuhliidae., p. 306-307. In J. Daget, J.-P. Gosse and D.F.E. Thys van den Audenaerde (eds.) Check-list of the freshwater fishes of Africa (CLOFFA). ISNB, Bruxelles, MRAC, Tervuren; and ORSTOM, Paris. Vol. 2.

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