Tripletail
  • Lobotes surinamensis
  • EnglishName: Tripletail
  • Local Name : Kandu faana, Huifathu mas
  • Size : Common to 50 cm; max. 1 m
  • Family: LOBOTIDAE
  • Order : Perciformes
  • Distinctive Characters: Dorsal fin with 11-13 spines and 13-16 rays. Anal fin with 3 spines and 9-12 rays. Pectoral fin with 17 rays. Body depth 2.0-2.5 in standard length. Body oval to oblong. A single dorsal fin with stout spines and elevated posterior section. Dorsal fin lobe rounded. Preopercle coarsely serrate. Roof of mouth and tongue toothless. Caudal fin rounded.
  • Colour: Olive to dark brown, mottled with dark spots. Juveniles yellow with darker spots.
  • Habitat and Biology: Inhabits both in coastal areas and in open sea around floating objects. Juveniles may sometimes be seen in very shallow water where they have a resemblance to floating leaves or weeds. Feeds mainly on bottom-dwelling crustaceans and small fish.
  • Distribution: Worldwide in tropical and subtropical waters.
  • Remarks: Adults of Lobotes surinamensis when seen offshore may appear rather like groupers. This explains the fishermen’s name “kandu faana” (ocean grouper). Juveniles, which are sometimes seen in shallow weedy lagoons, have been called “huifathu mas”.