Striate Anglerfish, Antennarius striatus (Shaw 1794)


Other Names: Blotched Anglerfish, Hairy Frogfish, Striate Frogfish, Striated Anglerfish, Striated Frogfish, Striped Angler, Striped Anglerfish, Striped Frogfish

A Striate Anglerfish, Antennarius striatus, with its worm-like lure, in Nelson Bay, New South Wales. Source: Dave Harasti / http://www.daveharasti.com/. License: All rights reserved

Summary:

An ambush predator with a very long lure that resembles a marine worm. Although individuals vary greatly in colour and form, most have zebra-like markings and skin covered in long filamentous appendages.

Fantastic video footage of Striate Anglerfish spawning

A Striate Anglerfish (aka Hairy Frogfish) eating a flounder, Engyprosopon grandisquama.

A pair of Striate Anglerfish 'walking' over the seafloor in Indonesia.

Slow motion footage of a Striate Anglerfish feeding.



Cite this page as:

Dianne J. Bray & Vanessa J. Thompson, 2011, Striate Anglerfish, Antennarius striatus, in Fishes of Australia, accessed 30 May 2016, http://www.fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/3832

Striate Anglerfish, Antennarius striatus (Shaw 1794)

More Info


Distribution

Known in Australian waters from about Perth, south Western Australia, northwards throughout the Northern Territory, Queensland, and south to Tathra, southern New South Wales. Also at Lord Howe Island.

Elsewhere widespread in all tropical and subtropical seas of the world, except for the eastern Pacific Ocean.

Striate Anglerfish live in a range of environments from shallow estuaries to deeper reef areas to depths of about 220 m.

Most individuals inhabit in relatively shallow waters where they live on sandy, rocky or muddy bottoms, usually in areas with lots of sponges in depths from 1 – 219 m.

Features

Meristic features: Dorsal-fin spines/rays I, I, I, 11-12; Anal-fin rays 7; Caudal-fin rays 9; Pectoral-fin rays 9-12 (rarely 9 or 12); Pelvic-fin spines/rays I, 5.

Esca with 2-7 elongate, cylindrical, worm-like appendages which may have a few filaments; bone supporting illicium extends in front of upper lip; skin with close-set bifurcated spinules, numerous cirri or small, slender, branched tentacles often present on head, body and fins.

Pectoral fins prehensile, with an ‘elbow-like’ joint; pelvic fins with a short, slender spine.

Size

To 25 cm total length.

Colour

Colour highly variable, usually light yellow to orange, but also green, red, grey, brown, or almost white with dark-brown to black irregular zebra-like bands or elongate blotches.

Solid-black individuals have been known to change colour to the yellow-striped phase in a period of about 5 weeks.

Males usually have longer skin filaments and are more intensely coloured than females.

Colour in preservative beige, light-yellow, orange, dark yellow-brown to black. The illicium is usually darkly banded, and the worm-like escal appendages are occasionally reddish pink. Lighter-color phases usually have a series of darkly pigmented streaks radiating from the eye. Belly without elongate markings but usually with scattered, dark circular spots. Solid-black color phase with tips of pectoral rays white.

Feeding

Striate Anglerfish are ambush predators and feed mostly on other fishes. Their excellent camouflage allows them to hide amongst sponges where they lie almost motionless, only wriggling their worm-like fishing lure in front of the mouth. Unsuspecting fishes that approach to investigate the lure are rapidly engulfed.

Anglerfishes have enormous mouths and very expandable stomachs and can swallow very large prey items.

A Striate Anglerfish wriggling its lure.

Biology

The sexes are separate and fertilization is external. Striate anglerfish produce pelagic eggs in a transparent gelatinous floating 'scroll-shaped' mass or 'raft' where they remain embedded until hatching. The pelagic larvae remain in the plankton for one to two months before settling out onto the reef.

Fisheries

Although of no interest to fisheries, Striate Anglerfish are sometimes collected for sale in the aquarium industry.

Conservation

IUCN Red List: Not evaluated

EPBC Act 1999: Not listed

Remarks

Striate Anglerfish often live in deeper, darker waters than many other members of the family Antennariidae. To help attract prey in deeper habitats, the esca contains special secretory cells that release an olfactory stimulus attractive to other fishes.

Similar Species

Although Antennarius striatus is most similar to Antennarius hispidus, it differs in having a slightly shorter illicium and two or more worm-like appendages on the esca or lure. The esca or lure of A. hispidus is shaped like a pom-pom.

Etymology

Antennarius is from the Latin, antenna meaning sensory organ on the head, in reference to the lure or modified first dorsal-fin spine. The species name striatus is from the Latin stria, meaning line, in reference to the striped colour pattern.

Species Citation

Lophius striatus Shaw 1794, The Naturalist's Miscellany 5: Pl. 175. Type locality: Tahiti.

Author

Dianne J. Bray & Vanessa J. Thompson

Striate Anglerfish, Antennarius striatus (Shaw 1794)

References


Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 292 pp. 106 pls.

Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2012. Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth : Tropical Reef Research 3 vols, 1260 pp. [151]

Allen, G.R. & Swainston, R. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A field guide for anglers and divers. Perth, WA : Western Australian Museum vi 201 pp., 70 pls.

Allen, G.R., N.J. Cross, D.J. Bray & D.F. Hoese 2006. Antennariidae. pp. 637-646 in Beesley, P.L. & Wells, A. (eds). Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Volume 35 Australia : ABRS & CSIRO Publishing Parts 1-3 2178 pp.

Arnold, R.J. & T.W. Pietsch 2012. Evolutionary history of frogfishes (Teleostei: Lophiiformes: Antennariidae): A molecular approach. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 62: 117-129 [128]

Coleman, N. 1980. Australian Sea Fishes South of 30ºS. Lane Cove, NSW : Doubleday Australia Pty Ltd 309 pp.

Francis, M. 1993. Checklist of the coastal fishes of Lord Howe, Norfolk, and Kermadec Islands, southwest Pacific Ocean. Pacific Science 47(2): 136-170 figs 1-2

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

Grant, E.M. 2002. Guide to Fishes. Redcliffe : EM Grant Pty Ltd 880 pp.

Hutchins, J.B. 2001. Checklist of the fishes of Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 63: 9-50

Hutchins, J.B. & Swainston, R. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete field guide for anglers and divers. Perth : Swainston Publishing 180 pp.

Johnson, J.W. 1999. Annotated checklist of the fishes of Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 43(2): 709-762

Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 437 pp.

Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to sea fishes of Australia. A comprehensive reference for divers and fishermen. Sydney, NSW, Australia : New Holland Publishers xvii, 434 pp.

Paxton, J.R., Hoese, D.F., Allen, G.R. & Hanley, J.E. (eds) 1989. Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Pisces: Petromyzontidae to Carangidae. Canberra : Australian Government Publishing Service Vol. 7 665 pp.

Pietsch, T.W. 1984. The genera of frogfishes (family Antennariidae). Copeia 1984(1): 27-44 fig. 1

Pietsch, T.W. 1999. Families Antennariidae, Tetrabrachiidae, Lophichthyidae. pp. 2013-2019 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 1397-2068 pp.

Pietsch, T.W. & Grobecker, D.B. 1987. Frogfishes of the World: Systematics, Zoogeography, and Behavioral Ecology. Palo Alto : Stanford University Press 420 pp.

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 507 pp. figs.

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 557 pp. figs.

Sainsbury, K.J., Kailola, P.J. & Leyland, G.G. 1985. Continental Shelf Fishes of Northern and North-Western Australia. Canberra : Fisheries Information Service 375 pp. figs & pls.

Schultz, L.P. 1957. The frogfishes of the family Antennariidae. Proceedings of the United States National Museum 107(3383): 47-105 figs 1-7 pls 1-14 [as Phrynelox atra]

Shaw, G. & Nodder, F.P. 1794. The Naturalist's Miscellany, or coloured figures of natural objects; drawn and described from nature. London Vol. 5 pls 162–182, unnumbered pages.

Whitley, G.P. 1957. A new angler fish. Western Australian Naturalist 5(7): 207-209 1 fig. [as Antennarius glauerti]

Quick Facts


CAAB Code:37210009

Biology:Worm-like 'fishing lure'

Depth:2-219 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:25 cm TL

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Species Maps

CAAB distribution map