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Phylum Chordata > Subphylum Vertebrata > fishes > Family Pomacentridae
Bengal sergeant
Abudefduf bengalensis

Family Pomacentridae
updated Sep 2020
Where seen? This fish in pajamas is sometimes seen in small groups in pools at low tide on some of our shores, among coral rubble near reefs. It is quite a nervous fish and hides in crevices among coral rubble at the slightest sign of danger. It is sometimes called the Narrow-banded sergeant major.

Features: To about 14cm, those seen on the intertidal are much smaller, about 4-6cm long. Head and body white, with 6-7 black narrow bars across a yellowish body. Sometimes grey bars. The tail has rounded lobes (not pointed) and is plain (there are no horizontal black stripes). There is no spot near the base of the tail. More on how to tell apart sergeants.

Sisters Island, Aug 08

Tanah Merah, Jun 11

Tanah Merah, Apr 11

Tanah Merah, May 11
What does it eat? It feeds on seaweeds, snails and small crabs. The fishes are said to be highly territorial.

Bengal sergeants on Singapore shores
On wildsingapore flickr

Other sightings on Singapore shores

Punggol, Sep 18
Photo shared by Dayna Cheah on facebook.

East Coast Park, Aug 18
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on facebook.

East Coast-Marina Bay, Nov 17
Photo shared by Loh Kok Sheng on facebook.

Berlayar Creek, Oct 17
Photo shared by Abel Yeo on facebook.

Terumbu Selegie, Jun 11
Photo shared by Jerome Pang on facebook.

Pulau Jong, Apr 11
Photo shared by Russel Low on facebook.

Lazarus Island, Feb 11
Photo shared by Russel Low on facebook.



  • Allen, Gerry, 2000. Marine Fishes of South-East Asia: A Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Periplus Editions. 292 pp.
  • Lieske, Ewald and Robert Myers. 2001. Coral Reef Fishes of the World Periplus Editions. 400pp.
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