Animal Species:Hammerjaw, Omosudis lowii Günther, 1887
The Hammerjaw has an iridescent silvery-bronze colour. It is a predator of fishes and squid.
Hammerjaw trawled during the NORFANZ expedition
Photographer: Mark McGrouther © NORFANZ Founding Partners
Standard Common Name
The Hammerjaw has a strongly compressed body that lacks scales. It has a very large mouth with a truncate lower jaw. There is at least one huge fang on the lower jaw and one to four fangs on the palatines. A short based dorsal fin is positioned behind the middle of the body. A dorsal adipose fin is positioned above the posterior anal fin rays. There is a dermal keel present on the caudal peduncle. The species has an iridescent silvery-bronze colour.
The species grows to 30 cm in length.
In Australia it is known from scattered localities off New South Wales, and off south-eastern and north-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.
Distribution by collection data
Feeding and Diet
The Hammerjaw is a predator of fishes and squid.
- Gomon, M.F. 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.
- Hoese, D.F., Bray, D.J., Paxton, J.R. & G.R. Allen. 2006. Fishes. In Beesley, P.L. & A. Wells. (eds) Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Volume 35. ABRS & CSIRO Publishing: Australia. parts 1-3, pages 1-2178.
- Paxton, J.R. & V.H. Niem 1999. Omosudidae. 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 3. Batoid fishes, chimaeras and bony fishes part 1 (Elopidae to Linophrynidae). FAO, Rome. Pp. iii-vi, 1398-2068.
Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology
Tags Fishes, Ichthyology, Hammerjaw, Omosudidae, NORFANZ, Omosudis lowii, Omosudid, silvery-bronze, iridescent, compressed body, large mouth, fang, 10 cm - 30 cm, mesopelagic water, bathypelagic water, tropical water, temperate water, marine,