The myogenic precursors responsible for muscle growth in amniotes develop from the dermomyotome, an epithelium at the external surface of the somite. In teleosts, the myogenic precursors responsible for growth have not been identified. We have used single cell lineage labeling in zebrafish to show that anterior border cells of epithelial somites are myogenic precursors responsible for zebrafish myotome growth. These cells move to the external surface of the embryonic myotome and express the transcription factor Pax7. Some remain on the external surface and some incorporate into the fast myotome, apparently by moving between differentiated slow fibres. The posterior cells of the somite, by contrast, elongate into medial muscle fibres. The surprising movement of the anterior somite cells to the external somite surface transforms a segmentally repeated arrangement of myogenic precursors into a medio-lateral arrangement similar to that seen in amniotes.