Tetrosomus reipublicae Click to enlarge image
A Turretfish at a depth of 8 m, Camp Cove, Sydney, New South Wales, April, 1999. Image: E. Schlögl
© E. Schlögl

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    reipublicae
    Genus
    Tetrosomus
    Family
    Ostraciidae
    Order
    Tetraodontiformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    The species grows to 22 cm in length.

Introduction

The Smallspine Turretfish varies from green to brown or pink with darker blotches. As the fish ages it has increasing numbers of blue spots. It is known from marine waters throughout the tropical Indo-Pacific.

Identification

The Smallspine Turretfish has a hard carapace that is triangular in cross-section. It has a small mouth and a pointed snout. The dorsal fin is positioned further forward than the anal fin. The colouration of the species varies from green to brown or pink with darker blotches. Some of the carapace plates have dark margins. As the fish ages it has increasing numbers of blue spots.

In many publications, this species has been listed as Tetrosomus concatenatus. This name is a junior synonym of the Atlantic species Lactophrys triqueter (Linnaeus, 1758).

Habitat

It occurs in a range of habitats from coral reef to inshore rocky reefs and seagrass beds.

Distribution

It is known from marine waters throughout the tropical Indo-Pacific. In Australia it is recorded from south-western Western Australia, around the tropical north and south to the southern coast of New South Wales.

References

  1. Edgar, G.J. 1997. Australian Marine Life; the plants and animals of temperate waters. Reed Books. Pp. 544.
  2. 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.
  3. Hutchins, B. & R. Swainston. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Swainston Publishing. Pp. 180.
  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.