Animal Species:Dusky Morwong, Dactylophora nigricans (Richardson, 1850)

Dusky Morwongs can be recognised by their colouration. The species is endemic to Australia.

Standard Common Name

Dusky Morwong

Alternative Name/s

The species has also been called Black Butterfish, Butter Perch, Butterfish, Nunckla, Nunda, Strongfish, and Tillywurti.

Identification

The Dusky Morwong can be recognised by its colouration. Adults are greyish to brownish grey above and whitish below. Immature fish are silvery with rows of orangish spots on the sides of the body. There are dark spots on the dorsal and caudal fins. Juveniles are deeper bodied. They are silvery with dark bands on the upper sides that extend through the dorsal fin.

Size range

It grows to 1.2 m in length.

Distribution

The Dusky Morwong is endemic to Australia. It occurs in temperate waters from the central coast of New South Wales to south-western Western Australia.

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

Dactylophora nigricans

Distribution by collection data

Ozcam map of Dusky Morwong specimens in the Australian Museums.

What does this mean?

Habitat

The species occurs on inshore rocky reefs. Larvae are usually found in seagrass beds.

Classification

Species:
nigricans
Genus:
Dactylophora
Family:
Cheilodactylidae
Order:
Perciformes
Class:
Actinopterygii
Subphylum:
Vertebrata
Phylum:
Chordata
Kingdom:
Animalia

What does this mean?

References

  1. Hutchins, B. & R. Swainston. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Swainston Publishing. Pp. 180.
  2. Kuiter R.H. in Gomon, M.F., Glover, C.J.M. & R.H. Kuiter (Eds). 1994. The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. State Print, Adelaide. Pp. 992.
  3. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.


Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology
Last Updated:

Tags fishes, ichthyology, Dusky Morwong, Dactylophora nigricans, Cheilodactylidae,