The Whitespotted Anglerfish is variable in colour. It can be yellow, orange, brown or black. The species is endemic to Australia.
The Whitespotted Anglerfish is a slightly compressed, deep-bodied fish. It has a dorsal fin that is divided into four parts. The illicium protrudes from on the tip of the snout and is the first spine of the dorsal fin. It is followed by two separate spines that are covered by puffy-looking skin. The posterior surface of the second spine is concave. The fourth part of the dorsal fin comprises 15 to 16 rays.
The species is variable in colour. It can be yellow, orange, brown or black. It sometimes has white patches on the body and a yellowish band from the eye to the mouth. There may be cutaneous appendages (skin flaps) on the body.
The Whitespotted Anglerfish lives on the sea floor and is usually found on coastal rocky reefs.
The species is endemic to Australia, occurring from Tasmania to 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.Ozcam map of Whitespotted Anglerfish specimens in the Australian Museums. http://ozcam.ala.org.au/occurrences/search?q=Phyllophryne%20scortea&zoom=off#mapView
- 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.
- Hutchins, B. & R. Swainston. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Swainston Publishing. Pp. 180.
- Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
- Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.
- Pietsch, T.W. 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.