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/The Conscientious Marine Aquarist

Sandperches, Family Pinguipedidae, Neat, Intelligent, and Nowhere to be Found in the Aquarium Interest...?

By Bob Fenner

Parapercis cylindrica, Fiji

Four genera and about sixty species... with only two which regularly show up in pet-fish markets. The Sandperches are bold feeders in the wild, often following divers around and nabbing photo-stunned small fishes and invertebrates as those prey are temporarily blinded by flash or distracted.

Parapercis clathrata Ogilby 1910, the Latticed Surfperch. Have a bottome tow of black centered orange spots. Indian Ocean into western Pacific; Persian Gulf to Micronesia. Fiji and N. Sulawesi images.  http://fishbase.sinica.edu.tw/
Country/CountrySpecies Summary.cfm?Country=Indonesia&Genus=Parapercis& Species=clathrata


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Parapercis cylindrica (Bloch 1792), the Cylindrical Sandperch. Indo-Pacific; Maldives to Fiji. To six inches in length. One off of Heron Island, Australia, another in N. Sulawesi.


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Parapercis hexophthalma (Cuvier 1829), the Speckled Sandperch. To nearly a foot in length. Indo-Pacific; Red Sea to Fiji. Common on the reefs over its distribution and the most often seen Sandperch in the hobby. One in Fiji, the other Australia. 

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Parapercis maculata  (Bloch & Schneider 1801), the Harlequin Sandperch. Indo-Pacific. To 20 cm. Indo-West Pacific: Persian Gulf to southern Japan. Raja Ampat pic. http://fishbase.org/Summary/speciesSummary.php?ID=46429&genusname=Parapercis& speciesname=maculata
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Parapercis millipunctata (Gunther 1860). Bali 2014
Parapercis punctulata the Spotted Sandperch. To six inches. Red blotches along the lower part of the body. Spiny dorsal w/ red, yellow margin. Distribution only in S.W. I.O. Mauritius 2016. Di pic.

Parapercis schauislandi (Steindachner 1900), Schauinsland's Seaperch. Indo-Pacific; Africa to Hawaii. 8 or 9 red bars/blotches on sides, first dorsal fin red and two black spots on caudal peduncle. To eight inches in length. Shown: a juvenile in captivity and adult off Maui.

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Parapercis snyderi Jordan & Starks 1905, the U-Mark Sandperch. Three U marks on the body, then broken/bars. Western Pacific; including Andaman Sea. To 10 cm. in length. Fishbase link. N. Sulawesi pix. 

Parapercis tetracantha  (Lacepede 1801), the Reticulated sandperch. Indo-West Pacific: Bay of Bengal to Japan and Indonesia. Raja Ampat pic. To 26 cm. http://fishbase.org/Summary/speciesSummary.php?ID=6674&genusname=Parapercis& speciesname=tetracantha
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Parapercis xanthozona (Bleeker 1849), the Yellowbar Sandperch. Indo-West Pacific; Eastern Africa to Fiji. To a bit over nine inches total length. In Pulau Redang, Malaysia, and N. Sulawesi.

Parapercis lineopunctata Randall 2003. Western Pacific: Sumatra, Sulawesi, Philippines, to Great Barrier Reef, Solomon Islands, Lord Howe Island.. Mabul, Malaysia juv. and Raja Ampat adult.

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