Bony Bream, Nematalosa erebi (Günther 1868)


Other Names: Australian River Gizzard Shad, Gizzard Shad, Hairback Herring, Hair-back Herring, Leichhardtian Bony Bream, Melon Fish, North-west Bony Bream, Pyberry, Queensland Bony Bream, Tukari

A Bony Bream, Nematalosa erebi, from Henbury Station, Northern Territory. Source: Robert Whyte / Flickr. License: CC BY Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives

Summary:
A medium-sized freshwater and estuarine species that is widespread across much of northern Australia and in the Murray Darling Basin.

Bony Bream are silvery with a greenish to greyish tinge above, and often have reddish tinge on the snout and belly. The last dorsal-fin ray is elongated and the scales along the belly form a distinct keel.

Video of Bony Bream feeding in a pool at the base of the escarpment in Kakadu National Park, Northern Territory.

Cite this page as:

Martin F. Gomon, 2011, Bony Bream, Nematalosa erebi, in Fishes of Australia, accessed 29 May 2016, http://www.fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/2061

Bony Bream, Nematalosa erebi (Günther 1868)

More Info


Distribution

Widespread in northern Australia and the Murray Darling Basin, from the Ashburton River in the Pilbara region, Western Australia, to the Nerang River, Queensland, and in the lake Eyre Basin, Barkley Tablelands and the Murray Darling Basin. Also in New Guinea.

Bony Bream inhabit the shallows of still or slow-flowing rivers, streams, lakes and waterholes, particularly in turbid conditions. Also found in desert bores and fresh or saline lakes (slightly less salty than sea water). Can tolerate water temperatures between 9° and 38°C and pH 4.8-8.6.

Features

Meristic features: Dorsal fin 14-19; Anal fin 17-27; Pectoral fin 14-18; Pelvic fin 8.

Body medium sized, laterally compressed, relatively deep bodied with a blunt, rounded snout; head and mouth small; eyes large; outer edge of dentary strongly flared outwards; gill rakers of first arch less than ½ length of corresponding gill filaments; tail large and deeply forked.


Scales cycloid, easily dislodged; vertical scale rows 40-46; lateral line scales 40 to 45; distinct line of scutes along ventral margin; head scaleless.


Single spineless short-based dorsal fin with last ray a long filament in larger fish; pectoral fins small; pelvic fins situated approximately mid way along the belly, below dorsal; anal fin long based; all fins spineless.

Size

Maximum size to about 32 cm SL, commonly 15-20 cm.

Colour

Usually silvery overall, sometimes greyish to greenish dorsally; some populations in Victoria develop a rusty red tinge thought to be associated with breeding; others have been reported with a dark blotch at the shoulder.

Feeding

Feeds mostly on benthic algae and detritus, as well as on small invertebrates.

Biology

Oviparous; females release pelagic eggs in the still waters of shallow, sandy bays in October to February. Males mature at 1-2 years and females at 2 years. Fecundity is high, 33000-880000 eggs produced depending on fish size.
Eggs small (0.83 mm diameter).
Larvae small and eel-like. Generally un-pigmented except for a line of melanophores along the dorsal border of the gut, a single melanophore located anterior to the cleithrum (after 6mm TL) and a fine line of melanophores along the hindmost two-thirds of the gut.

Remarks

The Bony Bream has been described many times by different authors.

Nematalosa erebi - list of synonyms

Chatoessus erebi Günther, 1868; Chatoessus richardsonii Castelnau, 1873; Chatoessus elongatus Macleay, 1883; Chatoessus horni Zietz, 1896; Fluvialosa paracome Whitley, 1948; Fluvialosa bulleri Whitley, 1948

Species Citation

Chatoessus erebi Günther, 1868, Cat. fish Brit. Mus.7: 407 [as Chatoëssus erebi from Queensland and New South Wales]. Type locality: Mary River, QLD.

Author

Martin F. Gomon

Resources


Bony Bream, Nematalosa erebi (Günther 1868)

References


Allen, G.R. 1989. Freshwater Fishes of Australia. Neptune, New Jersey : T.F.H. Publications 240 pp., 63 pls.

Allen, G.R., Midgley, S.H. & Allen, M. 2002. Field Guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Australia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 394 pp.

Briggs, I.C. & R.M. McDowall. 1996. In: McDowall, R.M. (ed.) Freshwater Fishes of South-Eastern Australia. Reed Books. 247 pp.

Cadwallader, P.L. & G.N. Backhouse 1983 A guide to the freshwater fish of Victoria. Government Printers. Melbourne. 249 p.

Castelnau, F.L. de 1873. Contribution to the ichthyology of Australia. 8. Fishes of Western Australia. Proceedings of the Zoological and Acclimatisation Society of Victoria 2: 123-149

Grant, E.M. 1975. Guide to Fishes. Brisbane : Queensland Government, Co-ordinator General’s Department 640 pp.

Günther, A. 1868. Catalogue of the Fishes in the British Museum. Catalogue of the Physostomi, containing the families Heteropygii, Cyprinidae, Gonorhynchidae, Hyodontidae, Osteoglossidae, Clupeidae, [thru] Halosauridae, in the collection of the British Museum. London : British Museum Vol. 7 512 pp.

Kailola, P.J., Williams, M.J., Stewart, P.C., Reichelt, R.E., McNee, A. & Grieve, C. 1993. Australian Fisheries Resources. Canberra : Bureau of Resource Sciences and the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation 422 pp.

Larson, H.K. & Martin, K.C. 1990. Freshwater Fishes of the Northern Territory. Northern Territory Museum of Arts and Sciences Handbook Series Number 1. Darwin : Northern Territory Museum of Arts and Sciences 102 pp. 73 figs.

Lintermans, Mark 2007 Fishes of the Murray-Darling Basin : an introductory guide. Canberra : Murray-Darling Basin Commission, 157 pp.

Macleay, W.J. 1883. Notes on a collection of fishes from the Burdekin and Mary Rivers, Queensland. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 1 8(2): 199-213

McDowall, R.M. (ed.) 1980. Freshwater Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Sydney : A.H. & A.W. Reed 208 pp., figs, 32 pls.

McDowall, R.M. (ed.) 1996. Freshwater Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Sydney : Reed Books 247 pp.

Merrick, J.R. & Schmida, G.E. 1984. Australian Freshwater Fishes Biology and Management. Sydney : J.R. Merrick 409 pp. figs 280 col. figs.

Morgan, D.L., M.G. Allen, P. Bedford & M. Horstman. 2004. Fish fauna of the Fitzroy River in the Kimberley region of Western Australia - including the Bunuba, Gooniyandi, Ngarinyin, Nyikina and Walmajarri Aboriginal names. Records of the Western Australian Museum 22: 147-161. PDF Open Access

Munroe, T.A., Wongratana, T. & Nizinski, M.S. 1999. Family Clupeidae. pp. 1775-1821 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 3 pp. 1397-2068.

Nelson, G.J. & Rothman, M.N. 1973. The species of gizzard shads (Dorosomatinae) with particular reference to the Indo-Pacific region. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 150(2): 133-206 figs 1-13

Puckridge, J.T. & Walker, K.F. 1990. Reproductive biology and larval development of a Gizzard Shad, Nematalosa erebi (Gunther) (Dorosomatinae: Teleostei), in the River Murray, South Australia. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 41(6): 695-712. Abstract

Wager, R. & Unmack, P.J. 2000. Fishes of the Lake Eyre Catchment of Central Australia. Brisbane : Department of Primary Industries and Queensland Fisheries Service 88 pp.

Whitehead, P.J.P. 1985. FAO species catalog. Clupeoid fishes of the world (suborder Clupeoidei). Part 1 — Chirocentridae, Clupeidae and Pristigasteridae. FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125 Vol. 7 Pt 1. pp. 1-303

Whitley, G.P. 1948. New sharks and fishes from Western Australia. Part 4. The Australian Zoologist 11(3): 259-276 figs 1-7 pls 24-25

Zietz, A.H.C. 1896. Pisces. pp. 176–180 pl. 16 in Spencer, B. (ed.) Report on the Work of the Horn Scientific Expedition to Central Australia. Part 2. Zoology. London.

Quick Facts


CAAB Code:37085019

Behaviour:Form large shoals

Habitat:shallow freshwater

Max Size:32 cm SL

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CAAB distribution map