Cirrhitidae: K III B2A

Cirrhitichthys oxycephalus (Bleeker, 1855)

Spotted hawkfish


Egg diameter in µm

Number of oil globules

Diameter of oil globule in µm

Yolk texture

Perivitelline space

Position of oil globule at hatch

Gut length   at eye- pigment stage








52% of NL



Egg: The small, bright amber oil globule, and large black pigment spots on the embryo, make this egg instantly recognisable (A & A1). Incubation is 28-30 hours. Occasioinal eggs with a clear (not amber) oil clobule can cause confusion with KIIIB1.

Larva: The early larva is equally unmistakable (B). At 4 days, the larva develops a reddish-black line of pigment ventrally from gut to notochord tip, with a little pigment dorsally at the tail, and below the gut (C2). B: NH, C&D: 4 days (24°C).

This egg was first seen in the DHM samples, but was subsequently seen off Park Rynie. Attempts to rear the larva were unsuccessful. Six larvae have been barcoded, and they match 5 adults collected locally (BOLD).

This species is a summer spawner, with egg numbers peaking from January to March in the DHM samples (green graph), when several hundred fresh eggs were seen in samples, indicating a spawning aggregation in the area. It was the 7th most common egg in the DHM samples (Table 2; Introductory Notes). Off Park Rynie, the egg was less common, but still indicated a summer maximum (blue graph). At Park Rynie, the egg has shown a variable presence, after being absent in the first 3 years (white graph). The Park Rynie linked samples had more eggs offshore (58%), indicating spawning around the 30m contour. See Section 7.3 and Table 1 of the Introductory Notes, for more information on the linked samples.

Linked samples