Blacktip Morwong, Goniistius francisi Burridge 2004

A Blacktip Morwong,Cheilodactylus francisi, at Comets Hole, Lord Howe Island Lagoon. Source: Graham Edgar / Reef Life Survey. License: CC BY Attribution

A whitish morwong with dark diagonal bands - one through the eye to the pectoral-fin base, one from the nape to the pectoral-fin base, a broad band from before the dorsal fin to the pelvic fin base, a broad band from behind the 4th dorsal-fin spine to the lower caudal fin lobe; anal fin white, upper caudal-fin lobe with a black tip, pelvic fins black.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2018, Goniistius francisi in Fishes of Australia, accessed 24 Mar 2019,

Blacktip Morwong, Goniistius francisi Burridge 2004

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Recorded from the Lord Howe Rise, Lord Howe Island, Middleton Reef, and Norfolk Island in the Tasman Sea. The species may also occur in the Kermadec Islands, northern New Zealand. .


Dorsal fin XVI-XVII, 31-34; Anal fin III, 8; Lateral line scales 64-66; Gill rakers 5-6+15-16, often 5+15.

Body depth 2.83 in SL (2.57-2.76); pelvic fins reaching but not extending beyond the anus, 5.55 in SL (4.55-5.81); prominent bony knobs on the prefrontals and above the upperlip.

Species Citation

Cheilodactylus (Goniistius) francisi Burridge, 2004, Rec. Aust. Mus. 56: 232, fig. 1. Type locality: off Phillip Point, Lord Howe Island [31°32'S, 159°04'E]


Bray, D.J. 2018


Australian Faunal Directory

Blacktip Morwong, Goniistius francisi Burridge 2004


Allen, G.R., Hoese, D.F., Paxton, J.R., Randall, J.E., Russell, B.C., Starck, W.A., Talbot, F.H. & Whitley, G.P. 1976. Annotated checklist of the fishes of Lord Howe Island. Records of the Australian Museum 30(15): 365-454 figs 1-2 (misidentified as Goniistius gibbosus)

Burridge, C.P. 2004. Cheilodactylus (Goniistius) francisi, a new species of morwong (Perciformes: Cirrhitoidea) from the southwest Pacific. Records of the Australian Museum 56: 231-234. DOI 10.3853/j.0067-1975.56.2004.1425 Open access

Francis, M. 1993. Checklist of the coastal fishes of Lord Howe, Norfolk, and Kermadec Islands, southwest Pacific Ocean. Pacific Science 47(2): 136-170 figs 1-2. (as Cheilodactylus vittatus)

Francis, M. 2001. Coastal Fishes of New Zealand. Auckland : Reed Publishing (NZ) 3, 103 pp. (as Cheilodactylus sp.)

Gill, A.C. & Reader, S.E. 1992. Fishes. pp. 90-93 in Hutchings, P. (ed.). Reef Biology. A Survey of Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs, South Pacific. Canberra : Australian National Parks Vol. 3, Kowari 230 pp. (as Cheilodactylus vittatus)

Oxley, W.G., Ayling, A.M., Cheal, A.J. & Osborne, K. 2004. Marine surveys undertaken in the Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs Marine National Nature Reserve, December 2003. Townsville : Australian Institute of Marine Sciences 64 pp. (as Goniistius vittatus)

Randall, J.E. 2001. Cirrhitidae, Cheilodactylidae. pp. 3321-3330 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 5 2791-3379 pp. (as Goniistius vittatus)

Randall, J.E. 2005. Reef and shore fishes of the South Pacific. New Caledonia to Tahiti and the Pitcairn Islands. Honolulu : University of Hawaii Press 707 pp. (as Goniistius francisi)

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37377015

Depth:6-88 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:28 cm SL

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