Yellowfin Pigfish, Bodianus flavipinnis Gomon 2001

A Yellowfin Pigfish, Bodianus flavipinnis, from the Kumera Patch, North Island, New Zealand. Source: Scott Tindale / FishBase. License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial

A subtropical and warm temperate hogfish living on rocky reefs of the outer continental shelf.

Cite this page as:
Martin F. Gomon, Bodianus flavipinnis in Fishes of Australia, accessed 09 Jun 2023,

Yellowfin Pigfish, Bodianus flavipinnis Gomon 2001

More Info


Occurs in warm temperate waters off eastern Australia and New Zealand, ranging from southeastern Queensland to southeastern Tasmania.  In New Zealand, it occurs around the North Island and has been taken off the northern tip of the South Island.  In Australian waters, it is found at depths at least to 250 m and likely deeper.  Known to occur in in caves and archways on reefs.


Dorsal fin rays usually XII, 11; anal fin rays III, 12 (rarely 11); pectoral fin rays ii 15 (rarely 14 or 16); lateral line scales 32-34 (rarely 35); predorsal scales 15-24, reaching forward just in advance of above posterior margin of orbit; cheek scales extending forward only to corner of mouth; scales absent on lower jaw. Teeth on dental ridge of each jaw in a single row, those anteriorly small but distinct, close behind and in line with prominent anterior canines. Posterior tips of dorsal and anal fins rounded; caudal fin truncate to slightly rounded.


Reaches at least 370 mm SL


Adults red above and white below with two large white blotches situated above lateral line and below third to fourth and eleventh to twelfth dorsal fin spines respectively; head red above level of mouth and white below, red area extending farther ventrally on operculum; dorsoposterior rim of eye yellow.  Dorsal fin orange anteriorly and yellow posteriorly.  Caudal fin with yellow hue.  Anal and pelvic fins white, anal with yellow hue posteriorly.  Pectoral fin bright yellow. 

Similar Species

This species shares meristic values with the four species of the B. vulpinus complex: B. vulpinus, B. oxycephalus, B. unimaculatus (G√ľnther, 1862) and the Hawaiian B. bathycapros.  The combination of values for three structures, dorsal fin with 12 spines and 11 segmented rays, anal fin with 3 spines and 12 segmented rays, and lateral line with 30 or 31 scales are unique to these species within the genus.  Bodianus flavipinnis differs markedly from the members of the B. vulpinus complex in lacking distinctive dichromatism between primary and secondary phases, if it exists at all in this species, and in not having a prominent broken red striped pattern in mature adults of either sex.


The name flavipinnis is from the Latin adjective flavus, "yellow", and noun pinna, "fin", in reference to the bright yellow pectoral fin that is characteristic of this species.

Species Citation

Bodianus flavipinnis Gomon, 2001. Descriptions of two new species of Bodianus (Perciformes: Labridae) from Australasian waters. New Zealand Journal of Zoology 28: 408, fig. 1.


Martin F. Gomon

Yellowfin Pigfish, Bodianus flavipinnis Gomon 2001


Gomon, Martin F.  2006.   A revision of the labrid fish genus Bodianus with descriptions of eight new species.  Records of the Australian Museum, Supplement 30: 1-133.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37384035

Depth:30-250 m

Max Size:37 cm SL

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