Coral Sea Gregory, Plectroglyphidodon gascoynei (Whitley 1964)

Other Names: Gold-belly Gregory

A Coral Sea Gregory, Plectroglyphidodon gascoynei, at Lord Howe Island in the Tasman Sea. Source: Andrew J. Green / Reef life Survey. License: CC by Attribution

A greyish to dusky damselfish with a yellow belly, yellow pectoral, pelvic and anal fins, a yellow pectoral-fin base with a small blue spot dorsally, and a yellow iris.
This species was previously known as Stegastes gascoynei.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2021, Plectroglyphidodon gascoynei in Fishes of Australia, accessed 20 Jun 2024,

Coral Sea Gregory, Plectroglyphidodon gascoynei (Whitley 1964)

More Info


Coral Sea, east of Mackay, and the Capricorn Group, Queensland, to Montague Island, New South Wales; also the Lord Howe Province and Norfolk Island in the Tasman Sea. Elsewhere the species occurs in the southwest Pacific: Kermadec Islands, New Zealand, New Caledonia and Tonga.
Usually inhabits exposed reef fronts on coral and rocky reefs, often in the surge zone, at depths to 30 m.


Dorsal fin XIV, 14-16; Anal fin II, 13-14. 


Feeds on zooplankton and detritus in the water column.


Forms distinct pairs during the breeding season. Females lay adhesive eggs onto the substrate, and the male parent guards and aerates the eggs until the larvae hatch.

Similar Species

The similar Yellowtip Gregory, Stegastes apicalis, is dark brownish and differs in having a yellow margin on the dorsal fin, a yellow margin on the upper caudal fin lobe,  a blue leading edge on the pelvic fin and a blue margin on the anal fin.


The species is named gascoynei after H.M.A.S. Gascoyne, from aboard which the new species was collected during a survey of the islands in the Coral Sea. 

Species Citation

Pseudopomacentrus gascoynei Whitley 1964, Records of the Australian Museum 26(5): 173, fig. 7. Type locality: Kenn Reef, Coral Sea. 


Bray, D.J. 2021


Atlas of Living Australia

Coral Sea Gregory, Plectroglyphidodon gascoynei (Whitley 1964)


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

Allen, G.R. 1991. Damselfishes of the World. Melle, Germany : Mergus Verlag 271 pp. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

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. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Allen, G.R., Hoese, D.F., Paxton, J.R., Randall, J.E., Russell, B.C., Starck, W.A., Talbot, F.H. & Whitley, G.P. 1976. Annotated checklist of the fishes of Lord Howe Island. Records of the Australian Museum 30(15): 365-454 figs 1-2 (as Eupomacentrus gascoynei)

Allen, G.R. & Emery, A.R. 1985. A review of the pomacentrid fishes of the genus Stegastes from the Indo-west Pacific with descriptions of two new species. Indo-Pacific Fishes 3: 1-31 figs 1-5 pls 1-3 (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Choat, J.H., van Herwerden, L., Robbins, W.D., Hobbs, J.P. & Ayling, A.M. 2006. A report on the ecological surveys undertaken at Middleton and Elizabeth Reefs, February 2006. Report by James Cook University to the Department of the Environment and Heritage. 65 pp. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Francis, M. 1993. Checklist of the coastal fishes of Lord Howe, Norfolk, and Kermadec Islands, southwest Pacific Ocean. Pacific Science 47(2): 136-170 figs 1-2 (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Francis, M.P. 2019. Checklist of the coastal fishes of Lord Howe, Norfolk and Kermadec Islands, southwest Pacific Ocean. figshare. Collection. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Francis, M.P. & Duffy, C.A.J. 2015. New records, checklist and biogeography of Kermadec Islands’ coastal fishes. pp. 481-495 in Trnski, T. & Schlumpf, H.A. (eds.) Kermadec Biodiversity Expedition 2011. Bulletin of the Auckland Museum 20: 1-518 (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Fricke, R. 2010. Stegastes gascoynei (errata version published in 2017). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T154732A115228454. Downloaded on 28 September 2020.

Gill, A.C. & Reader, S.E. 1992. Fishes. pp. 90-93, 193-228 in Hutchings, P. (ed.)  Reef Biology. A Survey of Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs, South Pacific. Canberra : Australian National Parks Vol. 3, Kowari 230 pp. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Johnson, J.W. 1999. Annotated checklist of the fishes of Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 43(2): 709-762 (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 437 pp. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Kuiter, R. & Kuiter, S. 2018. Coastal sea-fishes of south-eastern Australia. Seaford, Victoria : Aquatic Photographics, 371 pp. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Oxley, W.G., Ayling, A.M., Cheal, A.J. & Osborne, K. 2004. Marine surveys undertaken in the Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs Marine National Nature Reserve, December 2003. Townsville : Australian Institute of Marine Sciences 64 pp. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

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. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

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. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

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. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Stewart, A.L., Roberts, C.D. & Struthers, C.D. 2015. Family Pomacentridae. pp. 1406-1423 in Roberts, C.D., Stewart, A.L. & Struthers, C.D. (eds). The Fishes of New Zealand. Wellington : Te Papa Press Vol. 4 pp. 1153-1748. (as Stegastes gascoynei)

Tang, K.L., Stiassny, M.L.J., Mayden, R.L. & DeSalle, R. 2021. Systematics of Damselfishes. Ichthyology & Herpetology 109(1): 258-318.

Whitley, G.P. 1964. Fishes from the Coral Sea and the Swain Reefs. Records of the Australian Museum 26(5): 145-195 figs 1-15 pls 8-10

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37372133

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:2-30 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:15 cm TL

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map