Animal Species:Dusky Driftfish, Psenes arafurensis Günther, 1889

The Dusky Driftfish is a compressed, deep bodied fish found in most tropical marine waters swimming amongst jellyfish or under floating weeds.

Dusky Driftfish swimming below a jellyfish

Ian Shaw © Ian Shaw

Standard Common Name

Dusky Driftfish

Alternative Name/s

Arafura Eyebrowfish, Banded Driftfish

Identification

The Dusky Driftfish has a compressed body, a small mouth and a deeply notched dorsal fin. Juveniles are silvery with indistinct dark bands. Adults are silver grey with thin stripes.

Size range

The species grows to 23 cm in length.

Distribution

It occurs worldwide in tropical marine waters. In Australia it is known from off north-western Western Australia and off northern Queensland to the central coast of New South Wales.

The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Click on the map for detailed information.  Source: Atlas of Living Australia.

Psenes arafurensis

Distribution by collection data

Ozcam map of Dusky Driftfish specimens in the Australian Museum.

What does this mean?

Habitat

Juveniles are often seen in coastal waters swimming with jellyfishes. Adults have been observed under floating weeds, but are probably benthopelagic.

Classification

Species:
arafurensis
Genus:
Psenes
Family:
Nomeidae
Order:
Perciformes
Class:
Actinopterygii
Subphylum:
Vertebrata
Phylum:
Chordata
Kingdom:
Animalia

What does this mean?

Further Reading

  1. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.
  2. Last, P.R. 2001. Nomeidae. in Carpenter, K.E. & V.H. Niem (Eds). FAO Species Identification Guide for Fishery Purposes. The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. Volume 6. Bony Fishes part 4 (Labridae to Latimeriidae), estuarine crocodiles, sea turtles, sea snakes and marine mammals. FAO, Rome. Pp. iii-v, 3381-4218.


Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology
Last Updated:

Tags fishes, ichthyology, Dusky Driftfish, Psenes arafurensis, Nomeidae, silver, grey, 'normal fish', 10 cm - 30 cm, countershaded, in relationship, jellyfish, benthopelagic, marine, adult, juvenile/young,