Javelin Pipefish, Lissocampus runa (Whitley 1931)


Other Names: West Australian Smooth Pipefish

A Javelin Pipefish, Lissocampus runa, in Clovelly Pool, Sydney, New South Wales, January 2016. Source: Sylke Rohrlach / Flickr. License: CC by Attribution-ShareAlike

Summary:

A slender pipefish with a distinctly concave snout, and the tail much longer than the trunk. Javelin Pipefish vary in colour from plain to a mottled brown, reddish, green, yellow or whitish, with or without bars on the sides and a brown blotch on the front of the dorsal fin. Males are usually whitish to bluish with a bright red gill cover.


Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. & Thompson, V.J. 2019, Lissocampus runa in Fishes of Australia, accessed 20 May 2019, http://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/3112

Javelin Pipefish, Lissocampus runa (Whitley 1931)

More Info


Distribution

Endemic to temperate waters of southern and eastern Australia; known from northern New South Wales southwards to Port Arthur, Tasmania, and west to about Perth, Western Australia. Inhabits tidepools, estuaries and bays, usually sheltering amongst seagrass (usually Zostera spp.) in depths to about 20 m.

Features

Dorsal fin 13–15; Anal fin 3–4; Pectoral fin 6–7; Caudal fin 10; Trunk rings 13–14; Tail rings 45–49; Subdorsal rings 2.25–1.50 + 0.50–1.25 = 2.25–3.00.

Head and body encased in bony rings. Body very elongate, trunk shallow, head aligned with body; snout short, snout length 29–36% HL, snout depth 50–84% snout length, dorsal margin of snout distinctly concave, falling well below dorsal rim of eye; opercle without longitudinal ridge; body ridges indistinct; superior trunk and tail ridges continuous; inferior trunk and tail ridges discontinuous near anal ring; lateral tail ridge apparently not confluent with tail ridges; tail not prehensile; dermal flaps present on head and body.

Dorsal fin short-based, originating on trunk, much closer to head than tip of tail; anal fin tiny, generally below rear half of dorsal fin; caudal fin small, rounded.

Size

Maximum length 112 mm SL.

Colour

The species is very well-camouflaged and variable in coloration, and males and females differ. Although it is usually plain, individuals may have dark bars on the side of the body, and the dorsal fin often has a brown anterior blotch. Females range from dark tan or green, to yellow or whitish. Males are usually whitish to bright blue with dark bars along the side, and a bright red gill cover.

Feeding

Unknown, likely to feed on very small crustaceans.

Biology

Males brood the eggs in an enclosed pouch on the underside of the body just anterior to the anal fin; pouch plates absent, pouch folds present.

Fisheries

Occasionally taken as bycatch in commercial trawls and dredges.

Conservation

Marine listed under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 and are subject to the export controls of the Commonwealth Wildlife Protection (Regulation of Exports and Imports) Act 1982.

Protected under the New South Wales, Victorian, Tasmanian and South Australian Fisheries Management Acts.

Similar Species

The Smooth Pipefish, Lissocampus caudalis, differs from the Javelin Pipefish, L. runa, in having a straight dorsal snout profile (vs a concave snout) and 51–60 tail rings (vs. 45-49 rings), distinguishing it from all other species in the genus.

Etymology

Lissocampus from the Greek lissos meaning smooth and kampe meaning sea animal. The species name is from the Latin runa, meaning dart or javelin.

Species Citation

Festucalix (Campichthys) runa Whitley 1931, Aust. Zool. 6(4): 313. Type locality: Long Bay, Sydney, New South Wales.

Author

Bray, D.J. & Thompson, V.J. 2019

Resources

Australian Faunal Directory

Javelin Pipefish, Lissocampus runa (Whitley 1931)

References


Allen G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of tropical Australia and South-east Asia: A field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Western Australia Western Australian Museum, 292 pp.

Dawson, C.E. 1977. Review of the Indo-Pacific pipefish genus Lissocampus (Syngnathidae). Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 89(53): 599-620 figs 1-7

Dawson, C.E. 1985. Indo-Pacific Pipefishes (Red Sea to the Americas). Gulf Coast Research Laboratory, Ocean Springs, Mississippi, USA. Pp. 230.

Gomon, M.F., Glover, C.J.M. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds) 1994. The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. Adelaide : State Printer 992 pp. 810 figs.

Hamilton, H., Saarman, N., Short, G., Sellas, A.B., Moore, B., Hoang, T., Grace, T.C.L., Gomon, M., Crow, K. & Simison, W.B. 2016. Molecular phylogeny and patterns of diversification in syngnathid fishes. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 107: 388-403 + supplement 1-4 + 5. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ympev.2016.10.003

Hindell, J.S., Perkins, G.P. & Keough, M.J. 2000. Evaluating the impact of predation by fish on the assemblage structure of fishes associated with seagrass (Heterozostera tasmanica) (Martens ex Ascherson) den Hartog, and unvegetated sand habitats. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 255(2): 153-174.

Hutchins, J.B. 1994. A survey of the nearshore reef fish fauna of Western Australia's west and south coasts — The Leeuwin Province. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 46: 1-66 figs 1-6

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.

Kuiter, R.H. 2000. Coastal fishes of south-eastern Australia. Gary Allen. Pp. 437.

Kuiter, R.H. 2008. Syngnathidae. In Gomon, M.F., D.J. Bray & R.H. Kuiter (eds.). The Fishes of Australia's southern coast. New Holland Publishers, Chatswood, Australia.

Kuiter, R.H. 2009. Seahorses and their relatives. Aquatic Photographics, Seaford, Australia.

Last, P.R., Scott, E.O.G. & Talbot, F.H. 1983. Fishes of Tasmania. Hobart : Tasmanian Fisheries Development Authority 563 pp. figs. 

McCulloch, A.R. 1909. Studies in Australian fishes, No. 2. Records of the Australian Museum 7(4): 315-321 fig. 18 pls 90-91 (misidentified as Ichthyocampus filum)

Pogonoski, J.J. Pollard, D.A. & Paxton, J.R. 2002. Conservation Overview and Action Plan for Australian Threatened and Potentially Threatened Marine and Estuarine Fishes. Canberra Environment Australia 375 pp.

Qian, Y. & Pollom, R. 2016. Lissocampus runa (errata version published in 2017). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T65370289A115426541. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T65370289A67624165.en. Downloaded on 30 January 2019.

Scott, T.D., Glover, C.J.M. & Southcott, R.V. 1974. The Marine and Freshwater Fishes of South Australia. Adelaide : Government Printer 392 pp. figs. (as Lissocampus affinis and Ichthyocampus runa)

Trnski, T. 2001. Diel and tidal abundance of fish larvae in a barrier-estuary channel in New South Wales. Marine and Freshwater Research 52(7): 995-1006.

Whitley, G.P. 1931. New names for Australian fishes. The Australian Zoologist 6(4): 310-334 1 fig. pls 25-27

Whitley, G.P. 1944. New sharks and fishes from Western Australia. The Australian Zoologist 10(3): 252-273 figs 1-6 (as Lissocampus affinis) See ref at BHL

Whitley, G.P. 1948. Studies in Ichthyology No. 13. Records of the Australian Museum 22(1): 70-94 figs 1-11 (as Larvicampus runa)

Quick Facts


CAAB Code:37282009

Biology:Males brood the eggs

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern; EPBC Act Marine Listed

Depth:1-20 m

Habitat:Seagrass beds

Max Size:11 cm TL

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Species Maps

CAAB distribution map