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Australian Wildlife

  Painted Anglerfish (Antennarius pictus)





Painted Anglerfish | Antennarius pictus photo
painted frogfish. Antennarius pictus. Taken off Bunaken Island, North Sulawesi, Indonesia.

Image by Jens Petersen - Some rights reserved.    (view image details)



PAINTED ANGLERFISH FACTS

Description
The Painted Anglerfish is a lumpy looking fish. It is variable in colour and can be red, orange, yellow, green, brown or black. It sometimes has saddle-like markings on the back. The pectoral fins usually have white tips. The tail usually has three spots. Adults are usually found with sponges. Juveniles are found on sand or reef, and mimic small sponges or nudibranchs. Anglerfishes attract their prey with a lure made up of a bait-like appendage (called the esca) on a stalk (called the illicium). The esca looks like prey, such as worms or crustacean. The anglerfish moves the lure in front of its mouth to attract prey. When not in use, the lure is held flat against the head.

Size
length to 20cm

Habitat
estuaries, bays, shallow sheltered reefs at depths to 75m.

Breeding
Oviparous. Eggs are contained in ribbon-like sheath or mass of gelatinous mucus.

Range
The Painted Anglerfish is found in marine waters of the tropical and temperate Indo-Pacific. In Australia it is found from the central coast of Western Australia, Northern Territory, Queensland to the New South Wales central coast.



Classification
Class:Actinopterygii
Order:Lophiiformes
Family:Antennariidae
Genus:Antennarius
Species:pictus
Common Name:Painted Anglerfish

Relatives in same Genus
  Striped Anglerfish (A. striatus)