Obscure Damsel, Pomacentrus adelus Allen 1991

Other Names: Dusky Damsel, Half-ocellus Damsel

An Obscure Damsel, Pomacentrus adelus, at Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef, Queensland . Source: Andy A. Lewis / Lizard Island Research Station. License: CC by Attribution

A dark brown to orangy-brown damselfish with a small dark "ear" spot, a golden iris, and often a blue-ringed ocellus on the rear of the dorsal fin (ocellus always present in juveniles). 

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2019, Pomacentrus adelus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 17 Jun 2024, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/Home/species/2334

Obscure Damsel, Pomacentrus adelus Allen 1991

More Info


Kimberley Region and to northern Western Australia including offshore reefs, Ashmore Reef, Timor Sea, and the northern Great Barrier Reef to Masthead Island, Queensland. Elsewhere the species occurs in the tropical, east-Indo-west Pacific.
Individuals or small groups inhabit open rubble patches on sheltered lagoons, coastal and outer reefs. 

Similar Species

The similar Millers Damsel, Pomacentrus milleri. has darker scale margins, a longer body profile, bright blue and yellow juveniles, and lacks a golden iris.

Species Citation

Pomacentrus adelus Allen 1991, Damselfishes of the World: 136, 222, 2 figs. Type locality: Ashmore Reef, Timor Sea, 0-4 m. 


Bray, D.J. 2019


Australian Faunal Directory

Obscure Damsel, Pomacentrus adelus Allen 1991


Allen, G.R. 1975. Damselfishes of the South Seas. New Jersey : T.F.H. Publications 237 pp. 251 figs.

Allen, G.R. 1991. Damselfishes of the World. Melle, Germany : Mergus Verlag 271 pp. 

Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 292 pp. 106 pls. 

Allen, G. R. 2001. Family Pomacentridae. pp. in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, T.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 6 pp. 3381-4218. 

Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2012. Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth : Tropical Reef Research 3 vols, 1260 pp. 

Heyward, A. et al. 2011. Monitoring Study S6B Corals Reefs, Montara: 2011 Shallow Reef Surveys at Ashmore, Cartier and Seringapatam Reefs. Final Report for PTTEP Australasia (Ashmore Cartier) Pty. Ltd. Australian Institute of Marine Science, Townsville. 163 pp. 

Hutchins, J.B. 2001. Biodiversity of shallow reef fish assemblages in Western Australia using a rapid censusing technique. Records of the Western Australian Museum 20: 247-270 

Kuiter, R.H. 1992. Tropical Reef-Fishes of the Western Pacific, Indonesia and Adjacent Waters. Jakarta : PT Gramedia Pustaka Utama 314 pp. pls.

Myers, R.F. 1999. Micronesian Reef Fishes. A comprehensive guide to the coral reef fishes of Micronesia. Guam : Coral Graphics vi 330 pp. 192 pls.

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.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37372104


Depth:0-8 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:8 cm TL

Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map