PORT PHILLIP BAY


Snook 

Sphyraena novaehollandiae Günther, 1860

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

Meristics.
Dorsal fin spines/rays: VI; I, 9
Anal fin spines/rays: II, 9-10
Caudal fin rays: 17
Pectoral fin rays: 13
Ventral fin spines/rays: I, 5
Lateral line: 125-135

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.
A large and highly diverse group of modern bony fishes many of which have a generalized perch like body form. Most have pelvic fins with one spine and 5 rays and the maxillary bone is excluded from the gape of the mouth. Interrelationships of the group are poorly understood and continue to be studied. They inhabit almost all aquatic habitats from high-altitude strams to the deep sea, although most are marine.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Chordata
Subphylum:
Craniata
Superclass:
Gnathostomata
Class:
Actinopterygii
Order:
Perciformes
Family:
Sphyraenidae
Genus:
Sphyraena
Species:
novaehollandiae

General Description

Body streamlined, very long and slender; snout pointed, lower jaw protruding; mouth large, jaw teeth prominent, including large canines in front of lower jaw; dorsal fins short-based, widely separated; anal fin short-based; pelvic fin origin almost below first dorsal fin; tail forked. Body greenish-grey above, sides silvery fading to white below; fins pale greenish-yellow. To 1.1 m, and at least 5 kg.

Biology

These streamlined voracious predators are solitary or hunt in pairs or in small schools, preying on other fishes and squids. They are often seen patrolling near seagrass and kelp beds, and along reef edges. They are a popular recreational species and a good eating fish.

Habitat

Coastal bays and estuaries.

Open water

Reefs

Distribution guide

Southern Australia.

Species Group

Fishes Barracudas and snooks

Depth

Shallow (1-30 m)

Water Column

Midwater Surface

Max Size

1.1 m

Diet

Carnivore

Harmful

Not thought to be harmful but potential for injury from sharp pointed teeth.

Commercial Species

Yes

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, Snook, Sphyraena novaehollandiae, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 18 Dec 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/8014

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