Cirrhitus pinnulatus   (Bloch & Schneider,  1801) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Randall, J.E.

Size: 24.3-30 cm.

Color: White, but overlaid with dark brown blotches and dark orange to reddish-brown spots. The ventral thorax and abdomen are white. The head is patterned with spots which are sometimes co-joined to form irregular bands. The pelvic and pectoral fins have reddish brown spots

The body is oblong. Mouth is large with the maxilla extending to the posterior edge of the eye. The dorsal fin is single and continuous and has 10 spines and 11 soft rays. The fin is notched between the spinous and soft parts. Minute hairy tufts or cirri project from the membrane that webs the dorsal spines. The anal fin has 3 spines and 6 soft rays. The pectoral fins are large and have 14 rays each. The caudal fin is truncate. The lateral line is relatively distinct and has 39-44 series of scales running along its length. Height 2.8-3, 3.4-3.5 in length with caudal. Head 2.7-2.9, 3.3-3.4 in length with caudal. Eye 4-4.9, 1.3-1.6 in snout and equal to or somewhat less than the inter orbital space, which is concave, as the eyes are placed so high up as to interfere with the upper profile of the head. Mouth rather large, oblique. Maxillary reaching to below middle of eye. Nostrils rounded, close together, immediately before eye, the anterior one with a posterior flap, which is fringed at the top. A row of pointed teeth in the jaws, the anterior ones in the lower jaw more distant and strong canines, in the upper jaw only the most anterior ones near symphysis are canines. A patch of villi form teeth anteriorly on each side of the symphysis in upper and lower jaw. A few rows of small teeth on the head of the vomer and a single row of similar teeth on the palatines. About 20 transverse rows of scales on the cheek. A narrow posterior and inferior limb of preopercle naked, its hind border denticulated. Interopercle, subopercle, and anterior border of opercle with patched of small scales. Scales of rest of opercle large. Dorsal spine strong, their membranes deeply incised. Fourth, fifth and sixth spine sub equal, longer than the others and about equal to snout and half eye. Last spine about half length of first dorsal ray. which is equal to snout and eye together. Third anal spine longer and stronger than the others, equal to snout and eye. First anal ray equal to head without snout. Lower unbranched pectoral rays longer than the upper, branched ones, the longest half diameter of eye shorter than head without snout. Ventrals rounded, equal to post orbital part of head. Caudal truncate, slightly rounded when expanded.

Protogynous, external fertilization, nonguarders, open water/substratum egg scatterers. Pelagic spawner. Spawning ascents into the water column occurred over a distance of 1.5 to 2.0 m.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Labrus pinnulatus Schneider, 1801
Cirrhites maculosus Bennett, 1828
(Junior synonym)
Cirrhitus alternatus Gill, 1862
(Junior synonym)
Cirrhitus maculatus Lacepede, 1803
(Junior synonym)
Cirrhitus pinnulatus (Forster, 1801)
(Senior synonym)
Cirrhitus spilotoceps Schultz, 1950
(Junior synonym)
Labrus marmoratus Lacepede, 1801
(Junior synonym)
Labrus pinnulatus Forster, 1801
(Senior synonym)
Labrus pinnulatus Bloch and Schneider, 1801
Cirrhitus maculosus Ruppell, 1828
Cirrhites maculatus Cuvier and Valenciennes, 1829
Labrus pinnulatus Lichtenstein, 1844
Cirrhitichthys marmoratus Bleeker, 1860
Cirrhitichthys maculatus Gunther, 1860
Cirrhitichthys maculatus Klunzinger, 1870
Cirrhites maculatus Gunther, 1875
Cirrhitichthys marmoratus Day, 1875
Cirrhites marmoratus Bleeker, 1877
Cirrhites marmoratus Klunzinger, 1884
Cirrhites marmoratus Sauvage, 1891
Cirrhitichthys maculatus Steindachner, 1901
Cirrhitus marmoratus Bryan and Herre, 1903
Cirrhitus marmoratus Jordan and Evermann, 1905
Cirrhitus marmoratus Jordan and Seale, 1906
Cirrhitus marmoratus Jordan and Herre, 1908
Cirrhtichthys maculatus Gilchrist and Thompson, 1908
Cirrhites marmoratus M. Weber, 1913
Cirrhitus marmoratus Barnard, 1927
Cirrhites pinnulatus Fowler, 1934
Cirrhites marmoratus P. J. Schmidt, 1930
Cirrhitus marmoratus Pietschmann, 1930
Cirrhitichthys marmoratus Day, 1878
Cirrhitus pinnulatus de Beaufort, 1940
Cirrhites pinnulatus (Forster, 1801)

Common Name (s)
• Stocky Hawkfish (English)
• Boffana (Mahl)
• Chammam (Malayalam)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
(Aquarium, fisheries, gamefish)

Habitat:  Benthic, Reef Associated, Rocky, Coastal
Trophic Level:  Consumer
Prey:  Crabs, other crustaceans, small fishes, sea urchins, brittle stars


• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Andaman Islands (Lat: 10) (Long: 93) INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Minicoy Atoll (Lat: 8) (Long: 71) INDIA
• Red Sea (Depth: 103168 mts)
• Gulf of Oman
• Lakshadweep, Kavaratti Atoll (Lat: 10.55) (Long: 72.63) INDIA (Record: 01/1991-06/1992)
• Lakshadweep, Agatti INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Amini INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Bitra INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Chettalatt INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Kavaratti INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Minicoy INDIA
• Lakshadweep INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Wafar, MVM (2003) Checklists of reef fauna Available at -
  • Rao, DV; Devi, K and Rajan, PT (2000) An account of ichthyofauna of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Bay of Bengal Occasional paper no 178 Records of the Zoological Survey of India ZSI, Calcutta 1-434 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Heemstra, E; Heemstra, P; Smale, M; Hoopers, T and Pelicier, D (2004) Preliminary checklist of coastal fishes from the Mauritian island of Rodrigues Journal of natural history Taylor and Francis 38(23-24) 3315 - 3350 Available at - index/
  • Letourneur, Y; Chabanet, P; Durville, P; Taquet, M; Teissier, E; Parmentier, M; Quero, JC and Pothin, K (2004) An updated checklist of the marine fish fauna of Reunion Island, south-western Indian Ocean Cybium 28(3) 199-216
  • Pillai, CSG; Gopakumar, G and Mohan, M (1991) Ichthyofauna of the intertidal reef flats of Minicoy atoll, Lakshadweep An analysis of its structure, relative abundance and food Journal of the Marine Biological Association of India The marine Biological Association of India 34 74-83 Available at - NIO, RC Kochi
  • Allen, GR and Mohammed, A (2003) Coral Reef Fishes of Indonesia Zoological Studies 42(1) 26299 Available at - Digital Information Resource Center, Pune.
  • Al-Abdessalaam, TZS (1995) Marine species of the Sultanate of Oman p 412 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Anand, PEV and Pillai, NGK (2003) Habitat distribution and species diversity of coral reef fishes in the reefslope of the Kavaratti atoll, Lakshadweep, India Journal of the Marine Biological Association of India The Marine Biological Association of India, Cochin 45(1) 88-98 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at -
  • Beaufort, LF (1940) The fishes of the Indo-Australian Archipelago A. J. Reprints agency, Karol Bagh, New Delhi 8 508 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • 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
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean; (Fishing area 51). FAO, Rome 1 Available at -
  • Jones, S. (1969) Catalogue of fishes from the Laccadive Archipelago in the reference collections of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute. Bulletin of Central Marine Research Institute CMFRI, Cochin 8 1-35 Available at -

Page last updated on:2011-03-10

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