Doubleband Fusilier (species: Pterocaesio digramma) in Lizard Island Field Guide (Lizard Island Field Guide)
Pterocaesio digramma
Doubleband Fusilier

©Andy Lewis: An adult Doubleband Fusilier

©Lyle Vail: Pterocaesio digramma in near-daytime colouration at night, Big Vicki's Reef, Lizard Island.

©Lyle Vail: Pterocaesio digramma in night colouration at Big Vicki's Reef, Lizard Island.
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Order Perciformes
Family Caesionidae
Genus Pterocaesio
Species Pterocaesio digramma



Distinguishing features

A small to medium sized elongate blue fish with a forked tail. Two thin gold lines run horizontally along the body, and the lateral line is above the lower line for most of its length. The tail has a dark blotch at the end of each caudal lobe. Usually seen in schools feeding mid-water above areas of good coral growth.


  • Up to 25 cm (Standard length)

Depth range

  • Depth range data is not yet available.


Similar taxa


©Atlas of Living Australia: Australian distribution

Distribution and habitat preferences

Feeds in the water column some 5-15m from the edge of the reef margin, favours areas with good water movement. Smaller fish are found in more sheltered areas with the large adults mainly along the exposed reef fronts.

Found in most reef habitats around the island.


This species is planktivorous, gathering into schools to feed on tiny crustacean zooplankton in the water column. The small juveniles aggregate with schools of yellow-tailed demoiselles, but then move into monospecific schools of their own species once they gain size. They are mature at 1 year of age and live to about 5 years.

Web resources


  • Ablan, C.M.A.A. (2006). Microsatellite loci for studies on population differentiation and connectivity of the red-bellied yellow tail fusilier, Caesio cuning (Caesionidae), Molecular Ecology Notes, 6: 170-172. LIRS catalog number 90031.
  • Carpenter, K.E. (1990). A phylogenetic analysis of the Caesionidae (Perciformes: Lutjanoidea), Copeia, 1990: 692-717. LIRS catalog number 90032.