A juvenile Painted Anglerfish at Bare Island Click to enlarge image
A 27 mm long juvenile Painted Anglerfish at a depth of 12 m, Bare Island, Sydney, New South Wales, July 2006. Thank you to T. Pietsch for confirming the identification of the fish. Image: Jason Coombs
© Jason Coombs

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    pictus
    Genus
    Antennarius
    Family
    Antennariidae
    Order
    Lophiiformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    The species grows to 16 cm in length.

Introduction

The Painted Anglerfish's colouration can vary from red, orange and yellow to green, brown or black. It occurs in marine waters throughout much of the tropical and temperate Indo-Pacific.

Identification

The Painted Anglerfish's colouration can vary from red, orange and yellow to green, brown or black. It sometimes has saddle-like markings dorsally. The pectoral fins often have white tips, and the tail commonly has three spots.

Habitat

The species lives in estuaries and bays, often associated with sponges.

Distribution

The Painted Anglerfish occurs in marine waters throughout much of the tropical and temperate Indo-Pacific. In Australia it is known from the central coast of Western Australia, around the tropical north of the country and south to the New South Wales central coast.

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.

Ozcam map of Painted Anglerfish specimens in the Australian Museums. http://ozcam.ala.org.au/occurrences/search?q=Antennarius%20pictus&zoom=off#mapView

References

  1. Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 292.
  2. Allen, G.R. & R. Swainston. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 201.
  3. 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.
  4. Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
  5. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.
  6. Pietsch, T.W. & D.B. Grobecker. 1987. Frogfishes of the World. Systematics, Zoogeography, and Behavioural Ecology. Stanford University Press. Pp. 420.
  7. Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & R.C. Steene. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Crawford House Press. Pp. 557.