PORT PHILLIP BAY


Southern Roughy 

Trachichthys australis Shaw, 1799

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

Meristics.
Dorsal fin spines/rays: III, 11-12
Anal fin spines/rays: III, 9-10
Caudal fin rays: 19
Pectoral fin rays: 13
Ventral fin spines/rays: I, 6
Lateral line: about 63

Interpreting fin count meristics.
Spines are in Roman numerals and soft rays are in Arabic numerals. Spines and rays that are continuous in one fin are separated by a comma. Fin sections are separated by semicolons.

Detailed descriptions of fin count and other meristics are in:
Gomon. M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds) (2008) Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.

Order level detail.
Deep-bodied somewhat compressed fishes, often with large mouths and eyes, strong fin spines and spiny scales. Many species have sculpturing, or large mucous cavities separated by bony ridges on the head. Others have strong spines on the gill covers, or serrated scales along the belly. Some are red to orange in colour, while others are yellow, brown and black.

Family level detail.
Compressed deep-bodied fishes with large bony heads with large mucous cavities, large mouths, prominent scutes along the belly and a single dorsal fin on the middle of the back. Some species are bioluminescent.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Chordata
Subphylum:
Craniata
Superclass:
Gnathostomata
Class:
Actinopterygii
Order:
Beryciformes
Family:
Trachichthyidae
Genus:
Trachichthys
Species:
australis

General Description

Head and body rounded; scales rough, firmly-attached; belly with a row of large scutes; anus just before anal fin; scutes absent between anus and anal fin; dorsal fin single, tall, on the middle of the back; tail forked. Reddish brown with broad white and brown vertical bands on gill cover; fins except pectoral with white leading edge and a dark brown band from base to fin tip. Juveniles with a striking black and white pattern. To 18 cm.

Biology

This nocturnal species is usually seen under ledges or hovering around cave entrances during the day. When disturbed, it may release a noxious substance into water as a defence mechanism.

Habitat

Moderately exposed rocky reefs, in depths of 0-30 m.

Reefs

Distribution guide

Southern Australia.

Species Group

Fishes Roughies

Depth

Shore (0-1 m)
Shallow (1-30 m)

Max Size

18 cm

Commercial Species

No

Global Dispersal

Native to Australia

Conservation Status

  • DSE Advisory List : Not listed
  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Not listed

Author

article author Bray, D.J.

Di Bray is a Senior Collection Manager of ichthyology at Museum Victoria.

Author

article author Gomon, M.F.

Dr. Martin Gomon is a Senior Curator of ichthyology at Museum Victoria.

citation

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. & Gomon, M.F., 2011, Southern Roughy, Trachichthys australis, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 21 Sep 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/6293

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