Western Australian Demoiselle, Neopomacentrus aktites (Allen, Moore & Allen 2017)

Other Names: Brown Demoiselle

A Brown Demoiselle, Neopomacentrus aktites, at Enderby Island, Dampier Marine Park, Western Australia,June 2009. Source: Graham Edgar / Reef Life Survey. License: CC by Attribution

A mostly dark brown to greyish-brown damselfish with a pale central area on the caudal fin, narrow blue margins on the dorsal, caudal, anal and pelvic fins, sometimes fine spots on caudal peduncle, and a small dark spot at the upper pectoral-fin base (not extending into the fin axil). The caudal fin has filamentous lobes, with the dark outer parts of the fin are restricted to the anterior half.
This species was previously misidentified as Neopomacentrus filamentosus, which occurs in the Indo-Malayan region.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2018, Neopomacentrus aktites in Fishes of Australia, accessed 04 Dec 2020,

Western Australian Demoiselle, Neopomacentrus aktites (Allen, Moore & Allen 2017)

More Info


Endemic to Western Australia, from Shark Bay northward to the Kimberley coast in the far northern part of Western Australia.
Generally inhabits inshore rocky and coral reefs, with ample crevices and coral formations for shelter. Often occurs in large aggregations, feeding on zooplankton well above the bottom.


Dorsal fin XIII,10–12 (usually 11); Anal fin II,10–12 (usually 11); Pectoral fin 17–19 (rarely 19); Lateral-line tubed scales 16–19 (usually 17–18); Gill rakers on first arch (total) 21–23 (usually 21–22)
Body depth 2.2–2.4 in SL; ventral margin of suborbital exposed (i.e. not hidden by scales); middle fin rays of dorsal and anal fins filamentous; dorsal and ventral margins of caudal fin filamentous.


Adults: head and body generally dark brown; dorsal and anal fins mainly dark brown with narrow blue margin, except posteriormost portion more or less abruptly semi-translucent pale yellowish to pale brownish; filamentous parts of dorsal and anal fins blackish; caudal fin dark brown basally and along dorsal and ventral margins of fin to at least middle portion of fin, also narrow blue dorsal and ventral margins; pelvic fins dark brown with narrow blue anterior margin; pectoral fins translucent with small dark-brown spot at base of uppermost ray.

Juveniles: head and body generally greyish brown grading to bluish ventrally; dorsal fin greyish-brown except posteriormost portion abruptly translucent; anal fin bluish gray, both dorsal and anal fins with narrow blue outer margin; caudal fin translucent whitish with dark brown dorsal and ventral margins on basal portion; pelvic fins bluish-grey with narrow blue anterior margin; pectoral fins translucent with a small dark-brown spot at base of uppermost ray


Feeds on zooplankton above the reef.

Similar Species

The Western Australian Demoiselle has been confused with the similar Neopomacentrus filamentosus, an Indo-Malayan species. N. aktites differs in lacking the following characters: a large black spot on the pectoral-fin axil, a large dark marking at the lateral-line origin, and yellow or gold colour on the upper edge of the rear opercle.


The specific name aktites is Greek (shore dweller) in reference to the relatively shallow-water habitat of this species.

Species Citation

Neopomacentrus aktites Allen, Moore & Allen 2017, Journal Ocean Science Foundation 29: 3, figs 1–4. Type locality: Western Australia, Dampier Archipelago, Flying Foam Passage, -20.46743°, 116.82782°, 2–9 m.


Bray, D.J. 2018


Australian Faunal Directory (as Neopomacentrus filamentosus)

Western Australian Demoiselle, Neopomacentrus aktites (Allen, Moore & Allen 2017)


Allen, G.R. 1985. Fishes of Western Australia. Book 9. pp. 2207-2534 526 pls in Burgess, W.E. & Axelrod, H.R. (eds). Pacific Marine Fishes. Neptune, New Jersey : T.F.H. Publications. (as Neopomacentrus filamentosus)

Allen, G.R. 2009. The marine fishes of tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Fourth revised edition. Western Australian Museum, Perth, Australia, 289 pp (as Neopomacentrus filamentosus)

 Allen, G.R., Moore, G.I. & Allen, M.G. 2017. Neopomacentrus aktites, a new species of damselfish (Pisces: Pomacentridae) from Western Australia. Journal of the Ocean Science Foundation 29: 1–10. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1066344  Open access

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. (as Neopomacentrus filamentosus)

Hutchins, B. 2004. Fishes of the Dampier Archipelago, Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 66: 343–398 (as Neopomacentrus filamentosus)

Hutchins, J.B. 1994. A survey of the nearshore reef fish fauna of Western Australia's west and south coasts — The Leeuwin Province. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 46: 1-66 figs 1-6 (as Neopomacentrus filamentosus)

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 (as Neopomacentrus filamentosus)

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37372090

Depth:1-10+ m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:5.4 cm SL

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CAAB distribution map