PORT PHILLIP BAY


Sponge Anglerfish 

Echinophryne reynoldsi Pietsch & Kuiter, 1984

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

Meristics.
Dorsal fin spines/rays: I; I; I; 15-16
Anal fin spines/rays: 8-9
Caudal fin rays: 9
Pectoral fin rays: 10
Ventral fin spines/rays: 5

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. and Kuiter, R.H. (2008) Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.

Order level detail.
A very diverse group of marine fishes found in shallow and deep sea environments, all with the first dorsal-fin spine modified into luring structure. Although most have short, rounded bodies, others are flattened and disc-like. Their mouths are enormous and they have amazingly distensible stomachs allowing then to engulf very large prey items.

Family level detail.
Small bottom-dwelling fishes with short, rounded slightly compressed bodies, three well-developed dorsal spines and huge upturned mouths. The first dorsal-fin spine (illicium) is modified into a 'fishing rod' tipped with a fleshy bait or lure (esca) that is wriggled in front of the mouth to attract unsuspecting prey.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Chordata
Subphylum:
Craniata
Superclass:
Gnathostomata
Class:
Actinopterygii
Order:
Lophiiformes
Family:
Antennariidae
Genus:
Echinophryne
Species:
reynoldsi

General Description

Body short, deep, tailbase short; illicium or 'fishing rod' without a distinct lure; body and fins densely covered in tiny divided spinules of equal length. Pale yellow to orange-brown often with many small ocelli, underside of head pale; irregular light greyish patches on head, above pectoral-fin base, at origin of dorsal fin, and on tail base; outer margins of fins greyish-white, sometimes with purplish-brown or pale brown borders. To 8 cm.

Biology

Anglerfishes are well-camouflaged ambush predators with their skin variously covered in spinules, filaments and other appendages to aid their camouflage.

Habitat

Rocky reefs in association with sponges, in depths of 10-20 m.

Reefs

Sponge gardens

Distribution guide

Southern Australia.

Species Group

Fishes Anglerfishes

Depth

Shallow (1-30 m)

Water Column

On or near sea floor

Max Size

8 cm

Diet

Carnivore

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, Sponge Anglerfish, Echinophryne reynoldsi, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 22 Aug 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/6327

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