Tasmanian Clingfish, <i>Aspasmogaster tasmaniensis</i> Click to enlarge image
A Tasmanian Clingfish, Aspasmogaster tasmaniensis, at a depth of 3.5m, Edithburgh, South Australia, 18 July 2009. Image: Phil Mercurio
© Phil Mercurio

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    tasmaniensis
    Genus
    Aspasmogaster
    Family
    Gobiesocidae
    Order
    Perciformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    It grows to 8 cm in length.

Introduction

The Tasmanian Clingfish can be recognised by its banded colour pattern. The species is endemic to Australia.

Identification

The Tasmanian Clingfish can be recognised by its banded colour pattern. The bands can be brownish, green, pink, red or orange. There is sometimes a stripe through the eye and across the operculum.

The species has a depressed head and a compressed caudal peduncle. It has a short based dorsal fin close to the tail. The pelvic fins are fused into a sucker. There are no scales or lateral line.


Aspasmogaster tasmaniensis
A Tasmanian Clingfish at a depth of 7m, Rapid Bay Jetty, South Australia, March 2004. Image: D. Teubner
© D. Teubner

Habitat

The Tasmanian Clingfish is common on shallow coastal rocky reefs and intertidal areas. It is also seen by divers under wharves.

Distribution

This species is endemic to Australia. It occurs in marine waters of eastern Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia, and south-western Western Australia.

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. Hutchins, J.B. in Gomon, M.F., Glover, C.J.M. & R.H. Kuiter (Eds). 1994. The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. State Print, Adelaide. Pp. 992.
  2. Hutchins, B. & R. Swainston. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Swainston Publishing. Pp. 180.
  3. Hutchins, J.B. 1984. Description of a new gobiesocid fish from south-western Australia, with a key to the species of Aspasmogaster. Records of the Western Australian Museum 11(2): 129-140.
  4. Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433. K
  5. uiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.
  6. Last, P.R., E.O.G. Scott & F.H. Talbot. 1983. Fishes of Tasmania. Tasmanian Fisheries Development Authority. Pp. 563.