Whiteband Bigeye, Pristigenys niphonia (Cuvier 1829)

Other Names: Japanese Bigeye, White-barred Bigeye, White-striped Big-eye

A Whiteband Bigeye, Pristigenys niphonia, at Osezaki, on the Izu Peninsula, Japan, depth 33 m. Source: Izuzuki / http://www.izuzuki.com/. License: CC BY Attribution-ShareAlike

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2017, Pristigenys niphonia in Fishes of Australia, accessed 28 Nov 2022, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/4463

Whiteband Bigeye, Pristigenys niphonia (Cuvier 1829)

More Info


Recorded in Australia from off North West Cape, Western Australia, to the Arafura Sea, Northern Territory, and off Cape York, Queensland, to the Taupo Seamount off Newcastle, New South Wales. The species occurs elsewhere in the tropical western Pacific from southern Japan to northern Australia and east to Samoa. 
Occurs on deeper offshore rocky reefs and trawl grounds. Adults inhabit deep reefs, while juveniles prefer shallower waters.


Dorsal fin X, 11; Anal fin III, 10; Pectoral fin 17-19; Pelvic fin I, 5; Gill rakers 7-10 + 19-22 (total 27-31); Lateral line scales 31-39; Vertebrae 23.


Overall dark red to reddish-orange, with five distinct white or pale bars on head and body becoming narrower with growth; pelvic fin tips dusky to black; dorsal spines and anterior half of fin membranes reddish-pink or pale pink; soft dorsal and anal fins with dusky to black margins; and pale submarginal bands in adults and subadults; pectoral fins reddish to pinkish; iris reddish to silvery. Bars on body become narrower with growth.


May be taken as bycatch in trawl fisheries. Juveniles are also seen in the aquarium industry, especially in Japan.

Species Citation

Priacanthus niphonius Cuvier, 1829, Histoire Naturelle des Poissons 3: 107. Type locality: Neotype, southwestern region of Nagasaki Bay, Kyushu Island, Japan, 31°55'N, 128°11'E. (original type locality Japan)


Bray, D.J. 2017


Australian Faunal Directory

Whiteband Bigeye, Pristigenys niphonia (Cuvier 1829)


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

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.

Carpenter, K.E., Lawrence, A. & Myers, R. 2016. Pristigenys niphonia. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T69545557A69545864. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T69545557A69545864.en. Downloaded on 11 September 2017.

Cuvier, G.L. in Cuvier, G.L. & Valenciennes, A. 1829. Histoire Naturelle des Poissons. Paris : Levrault Vol. 3 500 pp., pls 41-71.

Gloerfelt-Tarp, T. & Kailola, P.J. 1984. Trawled Fishes of Southern Indonesia and Northwest Australia. Jakarta : Dir. Gen. Fish. (Indonesia), German Tech. Coop., Aust. Dev. Ass. Bur. 406 pp.

Iwatsuki, Y., T. Matsuda, W.C. Starnes, T. Nakabo & T. Yoshino. 2012. A valid priacanthid species, Pristigenys rugulgens (Valenciennes 1862), and a redescription of P. niphonia (Cuvier in Cuvier & Valenciennes 1829) in the Indo-West Pacific (Perciformes: Priacanthdiae). Zootaxa 3206: 41-57. Abstract

Russell, B.C. & Houston, W. 1989. Offshore fishes of the Arafura Sea. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 6(1): 69-84.

Sainsbury, K.J., Kailola, P.J. & Leyland, G.G. 1985. Continental Shelf Fishes of Northern and North-Western Australia. Canberra : Fisheries Information Service 375 pp. figs & pls.

Starnes, W.C. 1988. Revision, phylogeny and biogeographic comments on the circumtropical marine percoid fish family Priacanthidae. Bulletin of Marine Science 43(2): 117-203 PDF available

Starnes, W.C. 1999. Family Priacanthidae. pp. 2590-2601 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. 4 2069-2790 pp.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37326006

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:10-300 m

Fishing:Aquarium fish

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:20 cm SL

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