Neoniphon argenteus

Silver Squirrelfish | Clearfin Squirrelfish | Smooth Squirrelfish
Neoniphon argenteusNeoniphon argenteus, adult, Lihou Reef, Coral Sea, Photo: Ian Shaw
Neoniphon argenteusNeoniphon argenteus, Night colours. Cook Islands, Photo: Graham Edgar
Neoniphon argenteusNeoniphon argenteus, Raja Ampat, Indonesia, Photo: Andrew Green
Neoniphon argenteusNeoniphon argenteus, Flores, Indonesia, Photo: Graham Edgar
Neoniphon argenteusNeoniphon argenteus, Offshore WA, Australia, Photo: Rick Stuart-Smith
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Neoniphon argenteus
Neoniphon argenteus
Neoniphon argenteus
Neoniphon argenteus
Neoniphon argenteus


Tropical Indo-Pacific


Narrow rows of densely packed brown spots along body with a double row of smaller red spots along lateral line, spots on cheek and an oval shaped red blotch on gill cover. Soft parts of dorsal, anal and tail fins yellow and leading edges red. N. sammara (Slender Squirrelfish), also has narrow body stripes but has large black blotch in spiny dorsal fin. Also similar N. opercularis (Blackfin Squirrelfish) lacks distinct body stripes. Night phase is white with red lateral line. Shy and secretive, hidden in or near branching corals during the day.


Max Size: 24 cm

Sea Temperature Range: 23.4-31.3°C

Depth: 1-20m

Habitat Generalization Index: 1.28

Also referred to as the SGI (Species Generalisation Index), this describes the habitat niche breadth of the species. Species with values less than 15 are found in a relatively narrow range of reef habitat types (specialists), while those over 25 may be found on most hard substrates within their range (generalists). Learn more here.

Conservation and Rarity

IUCN Status: Not Evaluated

Occurrence: Infrequent (5.0% 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: Few (4 per transect)

Abundance is calculated as the average number of individuals recorded per RLS transect, where present.

Edit by: Joe Shields

Further Information