Goblinfish, Glyptauchen panduratus Click to enlarge image
A Goblinfish under kelp at a depth of 11 m, 'The Steps', Kurnell, Sydney, New South Wales, January 2013. Image: Della Ross
© Della Ross

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    panduratus
    Genus
    Glyptauchen
    Family
    Tetrarogidae
    Order
    Scorpaeniformes
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    20 cm

Introduction

The Goblinfish can be recognised by the deep transverse groove behind the head and large pectoral fins.

Identification

The colouration of the species is variable from white to reddish-brown and black. Individuals can quickly change their colouration to match the environment.

Habitat

Coatal reefs and rocky areas in estuaries.

Distribution

The Goblinfish is an Australian endemic that occurs in marine waters of southern Australia.

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.



Other behaviours and adaptations

The species is rarely sighted during the day, emerging from cover at night.

Danger to humans

The dorsal spines are venomous.

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. Hutchins, B. & R. Swainston. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Swainston Publishing. Pp. 180.
  3. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.