Striped Scat, Selenotoca multifasciata Click to enlarge image
A Striped Scat at a depth of 4 m, Fly Point, Port Stephens, New South Wales, 12 June 2010. Image: Jonathan Regan
© Jonathan Regan

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    multifasciata
    Genus
    Selenotoca
    Family
    Scatophagidae
    Order
    Perciformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    The species grows to 41 cm in length.

Introduction

The Striped Scat is greenish to yellow above becoming silvery below. It feeds on small benthic invertebrates and detritus.

Identification

The Striped Scat is a deep-bodied, compressed fish that has tiny ctenoid scales. The body is greenish to yellow above becoming silvery below. It has a variable pattern of 10 to 12 dark vertical bars on the side of the body. There are short bars and spots on the lower sides.

Habitat

Adults are usually found schooling in sandy areas of estuaries and river mouths. Juveniles commonly enter freshwater streams.

Distribution

The species occurs in the Western Pacific. In Australia this species is recorded from the central coast of Western Australia, around the tropical north and south to the central New South Wales 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.



Feeding and diet

It feeds on small benthic invertebrates and detritus.

Danger to humans

Care must be taken if this species is handled. At the base if each fin spine is a venom gland. The fin spines can inflict painful wounds.

References

  1. Allen, G.R., Midgley, S.H. & M. Allen. 2002. Field Guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Australia. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 394.
  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. Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.
  4. Merrick, J.R. & G.E. Schmida. 1984. Australian Freshwater Fishes. Biology and Management. John R. Merrick. Pp. 409.