Black-backed butterflyfish
  • Chaetodon melannotus
  • EnglishName: Black-backed butterflyfish
  • Local Name : Kalhali bibee
  • Size : Max. 15 cm
  • Family: CHAETODONTIDAE
  • Order : Perciformes
  • Distinctive Characters: Dorsal fin with 12 spines and 18-21 rays. Anal fin with 3 spines and 16-18 rays. Pectoral fin with 14-15 rays. Body depth 1.6-1.8 in standard length.
  • Colour: Overall white with bright yellow fins. Numerous yellow oblique black lines on sides. Upper back blackish. A black blotch above anal spines. A yellow edged, black bar through eyes.
  • Habitat and Biology: Usually seen in rich coral areas to 20 m depth. It may be seen singly, in pairs or in small groups. Feeds mainly on coral polyps.
  • Distribution: Indo-Pacific.
  • Remarks: The exquisitely patterned Chaetodon melannotus is a common species in the Maldives. This species, although feeds on coral polyp, is suited for aquarium life and can be maintained.