Definitions

one spot

One-spot puller

The one-spot puller (in New Zealand) or brown puller (in Australia), Chromis hypsilepis, is a damselfish of the genus Chromis, found off south east Australia and between North Cape and East Cape of the North Island of New Zealand to depths of about 60 m, off rocky coasts. Its length is between 15 and 20 cm.

The one-spot puller is very similar to the New Zealand demoiselle in appearance, habit, and size, but has a slightly blunter snout and a different colour pattern. It is more yellow-green than the Demoiselle and has yellow markings on the head and gill covers. There is a darker green margin on each scale and a single white spot on each side of the back, close to the upper base of the caudal peduncle.

The one-spot puller is a small schooling fish with a compact body and a deeply forked tail and large pectoral fins. The large eyes set forward above the mouth aid in feeding on the planktonic animals, which is their main diet. Schools of Demoiselle are normally seen near rock pinnacles and underwater cliff faces, where currents bring a steady supply of food.

In November and December, males prepare nesting sites on patches of rock with a covering of small red algae. They change colour to a brilliant deep blue with a prominent white flash on the V of the tail. After the females lay their eggs by January or February, the nests are vigorously defended by the males who chase away much larger fish, and divers. The eggs hatch within seven days and the hatchlings settle after a few weeks as part of the plankton.

References

  • Tony Ayling & Geoffrey Cox, Collins Guide to the Sea Fishes of New Zealand, (William Collins Publishers Ltd, Auckland, New Zealand 1982) ISBN 0-00-216987-8
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