Girdled Pipefish, Festucalex cinctus Click to enlarge image
A Girdled Pipefish at a depth of 8 m, Fly Point, Port Stephens, New South Wales, September 2009. Image: Sascha Schulz
© Sascha Schulz

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    cinctus
    Genus
    Festucalex
    Family
    Syngnathidae
    Order
    Syngnathiformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    The species grows to 16 cm in length.

Introduction

The Girdled Pipefish has a broad head, slender snout and leafy appendages on the dorsal ridges. The species is endemic to Australia.

Identification

The Girdled Pipefish can be recognised by its broad head, slender snout and leafy appendages on the dorsal ridges. It is variable in colour, usually a dark grey, or orange-brown with pale bars across the back. Occasionally pale or black individuals are seen.

The Girdled Pipefish was described in 1882 by Australian Museum Director and ichthyologist Edward Pierson Ramsay.

Habitat

The species is usually found in sheltered coastal bays, often on patches of rubble, sand or in sparse algal growth in depths of 10 m to 20 m. It has also been caught in deeper water by trawlers.

Distribution

It is endemic to Australia, occurring in inshore waters of the Northern Territory, Queensland and New South Wales.

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



References

  1. 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.
  2. Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-Eastern Australia. Crawford House Press. Pp. 437.
  3. Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
  4. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Seahorses, Pipefishes and their Relatives. A Comprehensive Guide to Syngnathiformes. TMC Publishing Pp. 240.