Bullseye Wriggler, Xenisthmus polyzonatus (Klunzinger 1871)

Other Names: Barred Wriggler

A Bullseye Wriggler, Xenisthmus polyzonatus, Nha Trang, from Vietnam. Source: Rick Winterbottom / FishWise Professional. License: CC BY Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike

A golden-brown to orange-brown wriggler with about 10-12 irregular pale-greyish bars along the side, a small pale-edged black spot on the base of the caudal fin, and spots on the dorsal and caudal fins forming irregular stripes.

Cite this page as:
Dianne J. Bray, Xenisthmus polyzonatus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 19 Apr 2024, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/200

Bullseye Wriggler, Xenisthmus polyzonatus (Klunzinger 1871)

More Info


Recorded in the Australian Region from the Territory of Ashmore & Cartier Islands, WA, and the Great Barrier Reef, Qld. Elsewhere in the tropical Indo-West Pacific from the Red Sea and islands in the Western Indian Ocean to Samoa and Tonga.

Inhabits sandy patches on coral reefs and rubble areas in lagoons and sheltered reef waters.


Meristic features: Dorsal fin VI + I, 11; Anal fin I, 10; Pectoral fin 15-17; Lateral scales ~60; predorsal scales ~20.

Species Citation

Eleotris polyzonatus Klunzinger, 1871, Verhand. Zool-Botan. Gesellsch. Wien 21: 482. Type locality: Koseir, Red Sea.


Dianne J. Bray

Bullseye Wriggler, Xenisthmus polyzonatus (Klunzinger 1871)


Allen, G.R. 1993. Fishes of Ashmore Reef and Cartier Island. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 44: 67-91.

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

Klunzinger, C.B. 1871. Synopsis der Fische des Rothern Meeres. 2. Theil. Verhandlungen der Zoologisch-Botanischen Gesellschaft in Wien 21: 441-688

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.

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 507 pp. figs.

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 557 pp. figs.

Smith, J.L.B. 1958. The fishes of the family Eleotridae in the western Indian Ocean. Ichthyological Bulletin, Department of Ichthyology, Rhodes University, Grahamstown 11: 137-163 figs 1-17 pls 1-3

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37429046

Depth:9-24 m

Habitat:Reef associated - sandy, rubble bottoms

Max Size:3.1 cm TL

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CAAB distribution map