The smooth flutemouth is a very elongated fish that has a long filament projecting from its forked tail fin. The filament is lined with sensory pores, and may serve as a long-range sensory system for detecting prey.
As a solitary, stealthy predator, the smooth flutemouth blends into the background and approaches its prey head-on. It eats by extending its jaws and engulfing live prey, particularly small fish, crustaceans and squid.
It can be found widely in Indo-Pacific regions along shallow, rocky reefs and in the Mediterranean Sea and European waters as an invasive species. In its native waters, it is common on the African east coast, Red Sea and around Pacific islands such as Easter Island, Hawaii, Japan and New Zealand.
- Also known as a cornetfish, bluespotted cornetfish, trompette, coronet, flutefish, reef cornet and smooth cornetfish
- Belongs to the same order as the pipefishes and seahorses
- Was first recorded as an invasive species in the Mediterranean in 2000
- Usually a solitary predator that feeds on small fish, crustaceans and squid
- Adults are found on reefs to depths of at least 128m
- Grows a max length of 160cm but has a common length of 1m