Dark-banded fusilier
  • Pterocaesio tile
  • EnglishName: Dark-banded fusilier
  • Local Name : Garahitha muguraan
  • Size : Common to 18 cm; max. 30 cm
  • Family: LUTJANIDAE
  • Order : Perciformes
  • Distinctive Characters: Dorsal fin with 11 or (rarely 10) spines and 19-22 rays. Anal fin with 3 spines and 13 rays. Pectoral fin with 22-24 rays. Body depth 3.8-4.4 in standard length. Body fusiform, elongate and compressed. Bases of dorsal and anal fin covered with scales.
  • Colour: Scales above the lateral line bluish green in their centres and black on their margins. Lateral line covered for most of its length by a black stripe about one scale width with a broad brilliant light blue zone below it. Lower third of body white to pinkish. Caudal fin with a black streaks on each lobe.
  • Habitat and Biology: Inhabits coastal waters and coral and rocky reef. A schooling fish, sometimes in groups with other fusiliers. Feeds on zooplankton in midwater aggregations.
  • Distribution: Indo-Pacific.
  • Remarks: Pterocaesio tile is one of the most common of the fusiliers in the Maldives. Juveniles are often used as live bait by tuna fishermen. Larger neon-blue-striped individuals form gleaming schools on the reefs, which are a greater attraction for divers.