Fun Stripey Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun Stripey Facts For Kids

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The stripey (Microcanthus strigatus) is also called a convict fish, Australian stripey, and the footballer. It is a sea chub and a ray-finned fish of the Microcanthinae subfamily and Kyphosidae family. There are 12 genera under this family.  They are a rare aquarium species. The official description of stripey fish was made by Georges Cuvier, a French zoologist, in 1831, giving them the name Chaetodon strigatus. William John Swainson, an English zoologist, came up with the name genus name in 1839. These fish are the only species in the genus Microcanthus. It has also been suggested that there are three more species within this genus, which is not well-accepted in many places. Other common names given to the species of this subfamily are mados and moonlighters. There are currently four genera in this subfamily – Microcanthus, Neatypus, Tilodon, Atypichthys. These fish are yellow, deep-bodied species. They have distinct stripes that are black and yellow, for which they are named stripey.

If you loved these facts about the stripey fish, do check out some amazing facts about the blue chromis and the kingklip.

Fun Stripey Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Dried algae, frozen brine shrimp, Mysis shrimp, and greens

What do they eat?


Average litter size?


How much do they weigh?


How long are they?

6.3 in (16 cm)

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

White, black, and yellow

Skin Type


What were their main threats?


What is their conservation status?

Least Concern

Where you'll find them?

Coral Reefs, Brackish Waters, And Rocky Reefs, Dense Aggregation In Caves And Under Ledges, Great Barrier Reef, Coastal Lagoon Reef, Rock Pools


Pacific Ocean









Stripey Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a stripey?

Stripey (Microcanthus strigatus) is a sea chub with a deep, compressed body of the family Kyphosidae. This fish is a ray-finned fish of the subfamily Microcanthinae. Stripey is also a famous aquarium fish.

What class of animal does a stripey belong to?

Stripey (Microcanthus strigatus) belongs to the class Actinopterygii of animals.

How many stripey are there in the world?

The data on the population of stripey (Microcanthus strigatus) is not available.

Where does a stripey live?

The range of distribution of this fish spreads across the Pacific Ocean divided into southern and northern distribution. The northern population is spread from Japan, China through Hawaii and the southern population is spread across south coastal Australia, off New Caledonia, and in Lord Howe Island. In Australia, the population is found from southern New South Wales through central Queensland and can extend to north-eastern Tasmania and eastern Victoria. This marine species population in western Australia is spread from Cape Leeuwin through Exmouth Gulf. This marine species is also found in the great barrier reef. They are also usually found in coastal reefs in the Sydney, Australia region.

What is a stripey's habitat?

The stripey's habitat includes dense aggregation in caves and under ledges, brackish waters, great barrier reef, coastal lagoon reef, coral reefs, and rocky reefs. Juveniles are found around rocky pools.

Who do stripeys live with?

These fish of Australia live in schools that are formed in the day near coral reefs in caves and ledges.

How long does a stripey live?

The life span of these fish of Australia is not known. However, the average lifespan of fish of the same family is around 10 years.

How do they reproduce?

It has been observed that the reproductive patterns of these northern (Hawaii) fish are different from the southern (Australia) fish. There is not much information on these marine yellow and black striped species. Also, there is no data on the number of eggs produced by the female stripeys.

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of Microcanthus strigatus (Cuvier, 1831) has not yet been evaluated. However, they are affected by the aquarium trade.

Stripey Fun Facts

What do stripey look like?

Stripeys have yellow and black stripes on their deep-compressed body and a round back. They have white stripes sometimes. These stripes extend to the dorsal and anal fins and a black stripe extends from their forehead till the edge of the eye.

The stripey is famous aquarium fish for its stipes.

How cute are they?

Microcanthus strigatus (Cuvier, 1831) is considered a cute aquarium fish.

How do they communicate?

This sea chub species communicate like any other fish species through sound, vocalization, body movements, and color.

How big is a stripey?

This sea chub grows up to 6.3 in (16 cm) long. In the subfamily Microcanthinae, these fish are moderately sized. This species does not grow more than 9.8 in (25 cm) in length. The stripey freshwater fish is smaller in size than a ghost knifefish that can grow up to 6-10 in (15-25 cm) long.

How fast can a stripey swim?

The data on the swimming speed of this sea chub species is not available. They are fast swimmers.

How much does a stripey weigh?

The exact weight of stripeys is not known. However, the Bermuda sea chub of the same family, Kyphosidae weighs around 13.2 lb (6 kg).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There is no specific name given to a male and female stripey.

What would you call a baby stripey?

There is no specific name given to baby stripeys. They are usually referred to as juveniles.

What do they eat?

The stripey diet includes dried algae, frozen brine shrimp, frozen shrimps, and greens. This fish also eats snails, clam meat, and zooplanktons.

Are they aggressive?

No, these marine species are not aggressive. These peaceful fish stay in schools and do not disturb any other fishes as tank mates.

Would they make a good pet?

Yes, the Australian stripey would make a good pet.

Did you know...

The family name Kyphosidae means sea chubs.

The name Mircocanthus is made of two Greek elements, 'mikros' meaning small and 'akantah' meaning thorn. The specific name 'strigatus' is of Latin origin meaning band or streaks of colors.

The predators of this fish are common species like lionfish, eels, and toadfish.

These small species are identical to some species in the butterflyfish family.

The superfamily Percoidea has around 73 families with 3,374 species.

The stripey belongs to the Percoidei suborder and it is one among the three suborders of the bony fish species. This suborder consists of basses, groupers, snappers, perches, and goatfishes. There are three superfamilies under this suborder.

Crayfishes, starfishes, and jellyfishes aren't really fish species. Crayfishes are crustaceans, jellyfishes are invertebrates, and starfishes are echinoderm.

The order Perciformes means 'perch-like.' There are more than 10,000 species in this order. There are also around 160 families and this is the most among any vertebrates order. There are darters, perches, groupers, and sea bass in this order.

Why is it called a stripey?

The name of the Australian stripey comes from the distinct yellow and black stripes on the bodies of these fish.

Having your own stripey

The Australian stripey is recommended to beginners as this is a peaceful saltwater fish and does not bother other fishes. This fish needs a medium-sized aquarium that can hold 30 gal (113 l) of water. It is quite easy to care for this fish. It is better to keep stripey in a group as they form schools. The pH level must be between 8.2-8.4 and the temperature between 73-78 F(23-26 C). It can be hard to get these fish out in pet stores. The Australian stripey is an aggressive eater and fast swimmer. It is also recommended to create similar stripey habitat in your aquarium. It has been observed that at night, this fish swims over the sandbed slowly searching for microfauna to ingest. These fish are common in Australia and are available for around $3.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these cichlid facts and bonito fish facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable stripey fish coloring pages.

If someone on our team is always keen to learn and grow, then it has to be Arpitha. She realized that starting early would help her gain an edge in her career, so she applied for internship and training programs before graduation. By the time she completed her B.E. in Aeronautical Engineering from Nitte Meenakshi Institute of Technology in 2020, she had already gained much practical knowledge and experience. Arpitha learned about Aero Structure Design, Product Design, Smart Materials, Wing Design, UAV Drone Design, and Development while working with some leading companies in Bangalore. She has also been a part of some notable projects, including Design, Analysis, and Fabrication of Morphing Wing, where she worked on new age morphing technology and used the concept of corrugated structures to develop high-performance aircraft, and Study on Shape Memory Alloys and Crack Analysis Using Abaqus XFEM that focused on 2-D and 3-D crack propagation analysis using Abaqus.

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