Animal Species:Latchet, Pterygotrigla polyommata (Richardson, 1839)
The Latchet can be recognised by the pair of long spines on the snout and long colourful pectoral fins.
Standard Common Name
Butterfly Gurnard, Flying Gurnard, Lachet Gurnard, Sharpbeak Gurnard, Spiny Gurnard,
The Latchet can be recognised by the pair of long spines on the snout, its tiny cycloid scales and its large colourful pectoral fins. This species is red above and silver below. Its dorsal and caudal fins are red, and the anal fin is white. The pectoral fins are blue to purplish with bands of yellow to green spots. There are two large white-margined black spots on the base of each pectoral fin.
The species grows to 57cm in length.
It is known from southern marine waters of Australia and New Zealand. In Australia the Latchet is recorded from temperate waters of the central coast of New South Wales, around the south of the country and north to about Perth, 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
It usually occurs on sandy or muddy bottoms in depths of 35 m to 200 m.
- Edgar, G.J. 1997. Australian Marine Life: the plants and animals of temperate waters. Reed Books. Pp. 544.
- 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.
- Hutchins, B. & R. Swainston. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Swainston Publishing. Pp. 180.
- Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.
Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology
Tags Fishes, Ichthyology, Latchet, Pterygotrigla polyommata, Triglidae, Butterfly Gurnard, Flying Gurnard, Lachet Gurnard, Sharpbeak Gurnard, Spiny Gurnard, long spines on snout, colourful pectoral fins, cycloid scales, red, silver underside, blue to purple pectoral fins, stripes or bands, yellow spots, green spots, dots/spots, 30 cm - 1 m, sandy bottoms, muddy bottoms, shallow water, adult,