Common in the Solitary Islands Marine Park. Distributed throughout the Indo-Pacific region: East Africa to Samoa, north to southern Japan, south to Tonga. In Australia recorded from the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland to southern New South Wales.
Frequents sheltered coastal bays and estuaries, preferring algal reef habitat. Depth range 3 - 15 m.
Three broad black body stripes with yellow dorsal fin. Similar Meiacanthus lineatus has an additional narrow dark stripe under the top edge of the dorsal fin. Usually found near the substrate, retreating to a hole or crevice when approached. Eggs are demersal and adhesive, attached to the substrate. Larvae are planktonic. Grows to 10 cm.
Kuiter, R. H., Coastal Fishes of South-Eastern Australia. Published by Crawford House Press Pty. Ltd., 1993. p.338.
R. Stuart-Smith, G. Edgar, A. Green, I. Shaw, Tropical Marine Fishes of Australia. Reed New Holland Publishers, 2015. p.377.
Atlas of Living Australia website at https://bie.ala.org.au/search?q=Petroscirtes+fallax. Accessed 01/07/18.
FishBase. Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2018. World Wide Web electronic publication. https://fishbase.ca/summary/Petroscirtes-fallax.html. Accessed 01/07/18.