Platycephalus malayanus   Bleeker  1853 (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: The Nature Conservation and Aquatic Sciences Service

Size: 52-228 mm

Color: Pale yellowish. Head with 3 or 4 narrow dark lines from eye to cheek. Four faint broad dark cross bands on dorsal side of body; the first below the posterior half of first dorsal, the second below the origin of soft dorsal, the third below the middle of soft dorsal and the fourth on caudal peduncle. The spines of first dorsal and rays of second dorsal with brown spots. Spots on pectoral and pelvic rays in the form of irregular cross bands; the distal margin of anal rays sometimes dusky. Caudal rays with dusky spots.

Head 3.0-3.2 in standard length, 3.3-3.7 in total length. Depth of body 7.0-8.8 in standard length, 8.6-10.5 in total length. Eye diameter 4.2-4.8 in head, 1.3-1.6 in snout and 0.2-0.3 in concave interorbital space. Maxillary reaching to below front border of eye. Villiform teeth in jaws, two oval patches of teeth on vomer and a narrow band of teeth on palatines. Two small spines between anterior nostrils. A strong spine on anterior orbital rim. Supraorbital ridge smooth anteriorly and posterior part serrated from above middle of eye with 7 to 12 spines, continued as the superior postorbital ridge with 3 or 4 spines. The inferior postorbital ridge with 5 spines, the last two in line with the lateral line. Suborbital ridge smooth anteriorly, with one spine below middle of eye and 2 to 4 spines posteriorly. Three preopercular spines, the uppermost one longest and the lowermost one minute. Opercle with two flat spines. Subopercle with somewhat well developed skinny flap. First dorsal spine small, third longest, equal to postorbital part of head. Pectoral fin as long as postorbital part of head or longer. Ventral fin about half eye diameter shorter than head. Lateral line smooth with the two anteriormost scales spiny.
Number of spines in the first dorsal fin: IX; number of spines and rays in the second dorsal fin: 11; number of spines and rays in the anal fin: 12; number of rays in the pectoral fin: ii, 19; number of spines and rays in the ventral fin: I, 5; number of scale rows along the lateral line: 52-56; number of horizontal scale rows usually counted from origin of the dorsal fin to the lateral line and from anal origin to the lateral line: 7+1+26; gill raker count: 1+1+4-5.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Platycephalus malayanus Bleeker 1853
Platycephalus malayanus Gunther 1860
Platycephalus variolosus Gunther 1876
Platycephalus malayanus Bleeker 1879
Platycephalus pristiger Max Weber 1895
Insidiator malayanus McCulloch 1914
Thysanophrys malayanus Fowler 1928
Platycephalus malayanus Hardenberg 1936
Platycephalus malayanus Herre 1940

Common Name (s)
• Valakka
Economic Importance and Threats



• Lakshadweep, Kavaratti INDIA (Record: 1980)
• Lakshadweep INDIA (Record: 1980)

Literature Source(s)
  • Wafar, MVM (2003) Checklists of reef fauna Available at -
  • Jones, S and Kumaran, M (1980) Fishes of the Laccadive Archipelago The Nature Conservation and Aquatic Sciences Service, Trivandrum, Kerala 760 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Beaufort, LF and Briggs, JC (1962) The fishes of the Indo-Australian Archipelago Pataudi House, Daryaganj, New Delhi 11 481 pp Available at - NIO, Goa

Page last updated on:2010-03-11

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