Marshall Dottyback, Pseudochromis marshallensis Schultz 1953

Other Names: Orange-spotted Dottyback, Yellow-tail Dottyback

A Marshall Dottyback, Pseudochromis marshallensis, at Marovo Island, western Solomon Islands, November 2014. Source: Mark Rosenstein / License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike

A dottyback with yellow spots on the body scales forming dotted lines along the sides, and a yellow tail. 

Video of a male Marshall Dottyback tending eggs.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2018, Pseudochromis marshallensis in Fishes of Australia, accessed 16 Apr 2024,

Marshall Dottyback, Pseudochromis marshallensis Schultz 1953

More Info


North West Cape to the Monte Bello Islands, Western Australia, Ashmore Reef and Cartier Island, Timor Sea, and the northern Great Barrier Reef, Queensland. Elsewhere, the species occurs in the tropical west-central Pacific, from Vietnam to the Marshall Islands. Inhabits lagoon and seaward reefs, usually sheltering in caves and under ledges.


Dottybacks lay their egg mass in a nest and the eggs are guarded by the male.


Dottybacks are protogynous hermaphrodites, and form small harems with a dominant male and several females.

Species Citation

Pseudochromis aurea marshallensis Schultz 1953, Fish. Marshall Marianas Is. 1: 392, fig. 63. Type locality: Rongelap Atoll, Marshall Islands. 


Bray, D.J. 2018


Australian Faunal Directory

Marshall Dottyback, Pseudochromis marshallensis Schultz 1953


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

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

Allen, G.R. & Swainston, R. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A field guide for anglers and divers. Perth, WA : Western Australian Museum vi 201 pp., 70 pls. 

Gill, A.C. 2004. Revision of the Indo-Pacific dottyback fish subfamily Pseudochrominae (Perciformes: Pseudochromidae). Smithiana, Publication in Aquatic Biodiversity, Monographs 1: 1-213 

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

Schultz, L.P. 1953. Family Pseudochromidae. pp. 380-411, figs 63-67, pl. 33A in Schultz, L.P., Herald, E.S., Lachner, E.A., Welander, A.D. & Woods, L.P. (eds). Fishes of the Marshall and Marianas Islands. Vol. 1. Families Asymmetrontidae through Siganidae. Bulletin of the United States National Museum 202(1): 1-685, figs 1-90, pls 1-74 

Smith-Vaniz, W.F. 2016. Pseudochromis marshallensis (errata version published in 2017). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T69583426A115466455. Downloaded on 17 June 2018.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37313008


Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:0-30 m

Fishing:Aquarium fish (rare)

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:8 cm TL

Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map