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Species profile—Halophryne diemensis (banded frogfish)


Animalia (animals) → Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) → Syngnathidae (pipefishes and seahorses) → Halophryne diemensis (banded frogfish)

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Species details

Animalia (animals)
Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Syngnathidae (pipefishes and seahorses)
Scientific name
Halophryne diemensis (Lesueur, 1824)
Common name
banded frogfish
WildNet taxon ID
Conservation significant
Wetland status
Wetland Dependant Species
Pest status
Frogfish have tough, smooth skin and a large round head. They have broad mouths with bands of small sharp teeth. The body and head have fleshy papillae (small tentacle-like projections) in various places, particularly along the mouth and above the eyes. Halophryne species have more elaborate papillae above the eyes and the gill slit is shorter and higher placed in relation to the pectoral fin (behind the gill).
The banded frogfish is dark brown, variable from spotted to irregular blotches forming a barred pattern over the back. Under the head and fore-belly the pattern is reticulated. Banded frogfish grow to a maximum length of about 27cm.
The banded frogfish is found in the tropical marine waters from Shark Bay, Western Australia across the northern coastline to the Capricornia group, southern Great Barrier Reef, Queensland. It is also know from the Indo-Malay Archipelago.
Distributional limits
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Species environment
The banded frogfish inhabits coastal silty bays and protected inner reef hiding under objects such as rocks or coral slabs.
The frogfish's drab colour and patterning allows them to blend perfectly with their surroundings while they sit motionless on the ocean floor waiting for prey to pass by. They are able to use their swim bladder to make loud croaking noises.
The female lays the eggs in a nest, which may be a rocky cave, an empty shell or a discarded jar. The female departs after laying the eggs, and the male cares for the young until they can fend for themselves. Frogfish produce few eggs, so this paternal care is important for the species survival.
Frogfish feed on various invertebrates (octopuses, crabs, prawns and shellfish) which are swallowed whole. Their stomach is expandable to accommodate large prey.
Contributors: Mellisa Mayhew 18/07/2008; Wayne Martin 09/11/2008
Egerton, L. (ed.) (2005). Encyclopedia of Australian Wildlife, (Revised Edition). Readers Digest Pty Ltd, Sydney.
Hoese, D.F., Bray, D.J., Paxton, J.R. & Allen, G.R. (2006). Fishes. In Beesley, P.L. & Wells, A. (eds) Zoological Catalogue of Australia, Volume 35.1, p. 631. ABRS & CSIRO Publishing: Collingwood.
Kuiter, R.H. (1996). Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland Ltd, Sydney.
Profile author
Mellisa Mayhew (09/11/2008)

Other resources

Data source

This profile data is sourced from the QLD Wildlife Data API using the Get species by ID function used under CC-By 4.0.

This information is sourced from the WildNet database managed by the Queensland Department of Environment and Science.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last updated
8 March 2022
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