Tag: Slender Suckerfish (Phtheirichthys Lineatus)

The Slender Suckerfish (Phtheirichthys Lineatus) is the only member of the genus Phtheirichthys.

As with all members of the Remora (Echeneidae) family, its main distinguishing feature is the modified dorsal fin "suction cup" on its head, which it uses to attach itself to a larger host animal.

It is generally dark in colour with two thin white stripes along the flank and a white underside (because it is the top of the head which attaches to the host, it is actually the underside which is usually seen).

The Slender Suckerfish reaches a maximum length of around 75cm, although smaller specimens are more common.

In local waters the preferred host species seem to be Batfish, large Groupers and when the opportunity arises, scuba divers!

Very small individuals will attach themselves to almost any animal that is larger than itself, such as Rabbitfish, Angelfish and larger species of Fusilier.

The Slender Suckerfish (Phtheirichthys Lineatus) is the only member of the genus Phtheirichthys.

As with all members of the Remora (Echeneidae) family, its main distinguishing feature is the modified dorsal fin "suction cup" on its head, which it uses to attach itself to a larger host animal.

It is generally dark in colour with two thin white stripes along the flank and a white underside (because it is the top of the head which attaches to the host, it is actually the underside which is usually seen).

The Slender Suckerfish reaches a maximum length of around 75cm, although smaller specimens are more common.

In local waters the preferred host species seem to be Batfish, large Groupers and when the opportunity arises, scuba divers!

Very small individuals will attach themselves to almost any animal that is larger than itself, such as Rabbitfish, Angelfish and larger species of Fusilier.

Alan's picture
Slender Suckerfish (Phtheirichthys lineatus) mistakes a diver for a big fish!!

A Slender Suckerfish (Phtheirichthys Lineatus) mistakes a diver for just another big fish with which it can catch a free ride.