Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes) 
Family: Acanthuridae (Surgeonfishes, tangs, unicornfishes)

Genus/species: Acanthurus dussumieri


GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Bluish to brownish body with horizontal line markings; orange band between eyes, continued behind each eye to gill cover., blue tail with numerous black spots; white caudal spine with the socket edged in black. Typically seen as a solitary fish but may also occur in small groups.

Max. size: up to 50 cm (20 in).



DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Indo-Pacific: from East Africa to Hawaii and the eastern Central Pacific. Also from Southwest Japan to the Great Barrier Reef. Absent from most of the Central Pacific. Adults are found mainly on deep coastal reef slopes and outer reef walls.

Depth ranges from 4–131 m (12-430 ft) and are usually found below 30 ft.

EYESTRIPE SURGEONFISH Acanthurus dussumieri

DIET IN THE WILD: Grazes algae from reefs and sand.


REMARKS: The eyestripe surgeonfish reputedly has a strong odor when cooked. The Hawaiian name for this fish is palani and a Hawaiian riddle based on this name means “odor reaching to heaven.” This species can quickly change its coloration to a much darker shade that obscures the yellow and markings. 


California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Philippine Coral Reef 2016

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