Animal Species:Tiger Pipefish, Filicampus tigris (Castelnau, 1879)

As its common name suggests the Tiger Pipefish has dark bands on the body.  The species is only known from Australia.

Tiger Pipefish at Fly Point

Sascha Schulz © Sascha Schulz

Standard Common Name

Tiger Pipefish

Identification

The Tiger Pipefish can be recognised by its colouration. It has dark bands on the body, which often contain blue blotches. There are stripes below the eye and small white saddles along the ventral ridge.  David Muirhead commented correctly (below) that juvenile and sub adult Tiger Pipefish have dermal appendages on the body. The dorsally-positioned appendages on the head of juveniles can be quite long.

Size range

The species grows to 35 cm in length.

Distribution

The Tiger Pipefish is endemic to Australia. It occurs from southern Queensland to central New South Wales and from the central to north-western coasts of 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.

Filicampus tigris

Distribution by collection data

Ozcam map of Tiger Pipefish specimens in the Australian Museums.

What does this mean?

Habitat

It is usually seen in estuaries on rubbly, sandy or weedy bottoms.

Classification

Species:
tigris
Genus:
Filicampus
Family:
Syngnathidae
Order:
Gasterosteiformes
Class:
Actinopterygii
Subphylum:
Vertebrata
Phylum:
Chordata
Kingdom:
Animalia

What does this mean?

References

  1. Dawson, C.E. 1985. Indo-Pacific Pipefishes (Red Sea to the Americas). The Gulf Coast Research Laboratory. Pp. 230.
  2. Dawson, C.E. in Gomon, M.F, J.C.M. Glover & R.H. Kuiter (Eds). 1994. The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. State Print, Adelaide. Pp. 992.
  3. Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
  4. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.
  5. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Seahorses, Pipefishes and their Relatives. A Comprehensive Guide to Syngnathiformes. TMC Publishing Pp. 240.
  6. Paxton, J.R. & W.N. Eschmeyer (Eds). 1994. Encyclopedia of Fishes. Sydney: New South Wales University Press; San Diego: Academic Press [1995]. Pp. 240.


Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology
Last Updated:

Tags fishes, ichthyology, Tiger Pipefish, Filicampus tigris, blue, white, grey, long and skinny, 30cm - 1m, blotches, mottled, rocky reef, marine, adult, Syngnathidae,