Slender Pigfish, Bodianus cylindriatus (Tanaka 1930)

Other Names: Cylindrical Hogfish

Slender Pigfish, Bodianus cylindriatus. Source: John E. Randall / Fishbase via EOL. License: CC by Attribution-Noncommercial

A small rare hogfish with the upper half pinkish-red to reddish-orange, a paler silvery-pink on sides and below, a broad yellow stripe through the eye, a red blotch on the anterior dorsal and anal fins, a red bar on the pectoral-fin base and a red spot on the caudal peduncle.
Originally described from Japanese waters, this deepwater species was only discovered off Australia's northeastern coast in recent years.

Cite this page as:
Martin F. Gomon & Dianne J. Bray, Bodianus cylindriatus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 28 May 2024,

Slender Pigfish, Bodianus cylindriatus (Tanaka 1930)

More Info


A Western Pacific species known from the Coral Sea between Australia and New Caledonia, China, Taiwan, southern Japan and the Kanmu Seamount of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. This deepwater species is most likely more widespread than has been recorded.


Meristic features: Dorsal-fin rays XII, 10; Anal-fin rays III, 12; Pectoral-fin rays ii, 14-15; Lateral-line scales usually 30; Predorsal scales 25-27; Total gill rakers 13-17. 

Body shallow (21.3-25.5% SL); caudal peduncle deep; head and snout pointed and short, head (31.8-34.2% SL);  snout (7.6-10.4% SL). Posterior corner of mouth below anterior half of eye; jaws not attenuate, with two pairs of prominent anterior canines; lower jaw having a low dental ridge with two consecutive rows of shorter canines; moderately large canine at posterior end of upper jaw.  
Predorsal scales 21-27, reaching to or in advance of anterior nostril; cheek scales reaching forward onto posterior end of upper lip, covering preopercle, subopercle and most of opercle, reaching forward on lower jaw in advance of anterior nostril; scaly basal sheath on base of dorsal and anal fins extremely low, ½ scale high; lateral-line scales with single unbranched laterosensory canal tube.  
Posterior tips of dorsal and anal fins rounded; caudal fin truncate; pectoral fin broadly rounded; first soft ray of pelvic fin not prolonged as filament, reaching just beyond anus at most.


A small species reaching 14.2 cm SL.


Body dark pink above grading to white below with large red spot midlaterally on scaly caudal-fin base. Head with broad yellow line extending from tip of snout to underside of eye and bending ventrally onto lower portion of operculum, and broad yellow stripe directed posteriorly from hind margin of eye. Dorsal fin pink basally and yellow distally with dark red membrane between first three spines. Anal fin white with dark red triangular marking at anterior end of base. Caudal fin yellow with reddish upper and lower margins. Pectoral fin clear, vertically elongate red spot on scaly base. Pelvic fin yellow with white leading edge.


Nothing is known of the biology of this rare species.


The apparent absence of juveniles in museum collections and the rarity of adults makes the determination of colour variation associated with ontogeny and sexual development impossible.

Similar Species

Differs from the closely related B. thoracotaeniatus (a species found on the Kyushu-Palau Ridge east of Okinawa, Japan) in lacking the prominent reddish brown stripe from the eye to the base of the tail and black distal margin along the anterior two-thirds of the dorsal fin. In addition, B. cylindriatus generally has a shallower body, a shorter head and a blunter snout.


The specific name cylindriatus is from the Latin cylinder meaning 'roller', and atus meaning 'having the nature of', presumably in reference to the narrow body shape.

Species Citation

Verreo cylindriatus Tanaka, 1930, Figs descript. fishes Japan 47: 941, pl. 187.


Martin F. Gomon & Dianne J. Bray

Slender Pigfish, Bodianus cylindriatus (Tanaka 1930)


Chave, E.H. & B.C. Mundy. 1994. Deep-sea benthic fish of the Hawaiian Archipelago, Cross Seamount, and Johnston Atoll. Pacific Science 48: 367-409.

Gomon, M.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.

Russell, B. 2010. Bodianus cylindriatus. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. . Downloaded on 05 November 2013.

Tanaka, S. 1930. Figures and descriptions of the fishes of Japan, including Riukiu Islands, Bonin Islands, Formosa, Kurile Islands, Korea and southern Sakhalin. Tokyo. Vol. 47, pp. 925–944, Pls. 185-187.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37384198

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:250-510 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:14.2 cm SL

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