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Phylum Chordata > Subphylum Vertebrata > fishes > Family Ostraciidae
Yellow boxfish
Ostracion cubicus
Family Ostraciidae
updated Sep 2020

Where seen? This cute little cube-like fish was seen once on Pulau Sekudu.

Features: To 45cm, the one seen was about 4cm long and probably a juvenile. It is cube-shaped, bright yellow with many small black dots. As the fish grows older, it will have larger dots or black-edged white eye-like spots. Adults grow to 45cm and are found in deeper waters. They are dusky yellow with irregular yellow lines on the head, with greyish blue fins. It is reported that juveniles are often seen among Acropora corals.

Pulau Sekudu, Feb 07

Tiny stick-like tail and tiny dorsal fins.

Small, downward-pointing tube-like mouth.
What do does it eat? It eats mainly seaweeds and also nibbles on tiny animals, sponges, sand dwelling worms, little crustaceans, snails and fishes.

Yellow cowfishes on Singapore shores
On wildsingapore flickr



  • Allen, Gerry, 2000. Marine Fishes of South-East Asia: A Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Periplus Editions. 292 pp.
  • Kuiter, Rudie H. 2002. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia: A Comprehensive Reference for Divers & Fishermen New Holland Publishers. 434pp.
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