Moonies


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Moonies or silver moonfishes are the common names for the members of the Monodactylidae family. The family members are distinguished by their oval, deep, silvery, and strongly compressed body. Both their anterior soft dorsal-fin rays and anal-fin rays are elongated.

Members of the Monodactylidae are found from West Africa water to Indo-Pacific water. They occur in shoals in estuaries, lagoons, and over shallow coral reefs, in brackish and sea water, sometimes in fresh water. They feed on small fish and invertebrates.

There are only 2 genera with 6 species worldwide. Malaysia is represented by 2 species from a single genus.


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Scientific Name: Monodactylus argenteus  (Linnaeus, 1758)
English Name: Silver Moony, Silver Moonfish
Mandarin Name | 鱼类中文名: 银鳞鲳 (Yín lín chāng)
Local Malay Name: Ikan Bawal Perak, Bebulan, Bawal-bulan Perak
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาเฉี่ยวหิน (Plā c̄heī̀yw h̄in)
Local Hokkien: Bat Hu
Main Identification Features: Posterior edge of dorsal and anal fins distinctly concave. Caudal fin slightly emarginate.
Size: Maximum total length about 25 cm.
Habitat and Ecology: Shallow coastal, estuaries and lower reaches of freshwater streams, to 12 m depth. Often found in schools. Feeds on plankton and detritus.







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