Key to Australia's Freshwater Fishes

Welcome to the Key to Australian Freshwater Fishes, an interactive tool to help you identify Australia’s freshwater fishes – those found upstream of tidal influence, beyond mangrove habitats. The key is based on a matrix of characters for each species and has lots of images and illustrations. The key is linked to image galleries and fact sheets for each species.

The Key to Australian Freshwater Fishes can be used by everyone interested in identifying freshwater fishes found in Australia. To help, the glossary provides you with an explanation of all technical terms found in the key (see link at the bottom right hand corner of this page).

The Key to Australian Freshwater Fishes was developed at Museum Victoria by members of the OzFishNet consortium with funding from the Australian Biological Resources Survey (ABRS) Commonwealth Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities.

The Lucid Key to Australian Freshwater Fishes was developed by Martin F. Gomon and Vanessa J. Thompson of Museum Victoria, in cooperation with other members of the OzFishNet consortium.  

Many high quality line drawings were generously provided by Rhyll Plant and Rosalind Poole.

The Australian Biological Resources Survey (ABRS) provided funds for the project and generously granted access to the ABRS Catalog database for distributional and descriptive information relating to the freshwater species treated.


Image credits

Many of the digital photographs, drawings, and plates in the Key to Australian Freshwater Fishes are used with the permission of the copyright owners, who are acknowledged in image captions. Thanks are due to the following photographers, organizations and/or businesses who generously allowed use of their digital images (see the Copyright notice for information about use of images and other content).

Suggested citation

Gomon, M.F. and V. Thompson. (2009) Key to Australian Freshwater Fishes, Lucid v. 3.4. Museum Victoria.
[date you accessed site]

Copyright notice

Unless otherwise indicated, content on this website (site) was created and/or authored by members of the OzFishNet consortium. This content may be freely distributed or copied as in the public domain. However, it is requested that in any subsequent use of this work, the authors be given appropriate acknowledgement (see below).

This site also contains information, text, and images created and/or prepared by individuals or institutions other than members of the consortium, that may be protected by copyright. Sources of information and text are mentioned in the Acknowledgements. In most instances, the origin of images has been indicated in image captions and in the Acknowledgements. Users must seek permission from the copyright owner(s) to use this material. Note that photographs taken by the authors (Martin F. Gomon & Vanessa J. Thompson), although not preceded by a copyright symbol in captions, may be protected by copyright. Links to the Internet sites of some individuals and institutions are available on the Acknowledgements page.

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