Thyrsitoides marleyi  I.46103-001 Click to enlarge image
Head of a Black Snoek , Thyrsitoides marleyi in the AM collection. Image: Mark McGrouther
© Australian Museum

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    marleyi
    Genus
    Thyrsitoides
    Family
    Gempylidae
    Order
    Perciformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    Grows to approximatley 1.8 m in length.

Introduction

The Black Snoek belongs to the family of fishes that includes Escolars, Gemfishes and Snake Mackerels.

Identification

The Black Snoek has a very elongate, compressed body. It has a large mouth with huge fang-like teeth at the front of the upper jaw. There are cartilaginous processes at the front of both jaws. This species has well developed pelvic fins and a caudal peduncle that lacks keels. There are two lateral lines - one high on the back and the other on the mid-side of the body.


Fotoware Image
A 1.76 m long (14.75 kg) Black Snoek caught on hook and line by C. Facey at a depth of 390 m, 30 km off Ballina, New South Wales, January 2004. Image: -
© Australian Museum

Habitat

The Black Snoek is a pelagic, schooling species.

Distribution

Tropical and temperate waters of the Indo-West Pacific down to depths of 400 m or greater. In Australia it is known from off southern to central Western Australia and northern to southern 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.



Further reading

  1. Nakamura, I. & N.V. Parin. 2001 Gempylidae. Snake mackerels. 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.