Differs from the closely related Shaw’s cowfish in having narrower spines on the back, a prominent bump in front of the eye, and a regular arrangement of blue-centred black spots on the yellow sides of the body. The female ornate cowfish is more difficult to distinguish because it has red, white and black striped sides, but the body is deeper with narrower spines on the back than female Shaw’s cowfish, and the lines along the sides are narrower and more linear.
Max Size: 15 cm
Sea Temperature Range: 11.0-22.2°C
Depth: 5 - 60 m
Habitat: Rocky Reef, Seagrass
IUCN Threat Status: Not Evaluated
Occurrence: Infrequent (4% of sites)
Occurrence describes how often the species is found on surveys within its distribution.
It is calculated as the % of reef sites surveyed by RLS divers across all the ecoregions in which the species has been observed
Abundance: Solitary (1 per transect)
Abundance is calculated as the average number of individuals recorded per RLS transect, where present.
Edit by: GJ Edgar. 2008. Australian Marine Life. New Holland, Sydney