Toothbrush Leatherjacket, Acanthaluteres vittiger (Castelnau 1873)


Other Names: Brown Leatherjacket, Pale Brown Leatherjacket

A male Toothbrush Leatherjacket, Acanthaluteres vittiger, on the Freycinet Peninsula, Tasmania. Source: Rick Stuart-Smith / Reef Life Survey. License: CC BY Attribution

Summary:
Males are blackish-blue to brown with many blue lines and spots, and a broad pale band from the eye to a large toothbrush-like patch of bristles on the side. Females are yellowish-brown to brown usually with scattered pale blotches and darker brown spots on the sides. The caudal peduncle lacks spines.

Cite this page as:
Acanthaluteres vittiger in Fishes of Australia, accessed 17 Nov 2018, http://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/788

Toothbrush Leatherjacket, Acanthaluteres vittiger (Castelnau 1873)

More Info


Distribution

Endemic to southern Australia, from about Coffs Harbour, New South Wales, to north of Leeman, Western Australia, including Tasmania. The species is abundant in coastal waters of Victoria and Tasmania. 

Juvenile toothbrush leatherjackets inhabit shallow sheltered seagrass beds, and generally move to rocky reefs as they grow. Adults are more common on deeper reefs.

Prior to settlement, larvae and small juveniles often shelter under floating seaweed before settling in seagrass beds.

Features

Dorsal fin II + 30-35 (second spine tiny); Anal fin 27-34; Caudal fin 12; Pectoral fin 11-13; Vertebrae 20.

Body rather elongate in males, oblong, of moderate depth, somewhat deeper in females, very compressed, with ventral flap of moderate size; caudal peduncle shallow. Head large, acutely pointed; eyes small; mouth very small; teeth large, central pair in upper jaw truncate, those opposite in lower jaw somewhat more pointed; gill openings in form of small slit mostly above each pectoral fin base. Skin rather coarse to touch;  midside of body in males with toothbrush-like patch of bristles, bristles poorly developed in females and juveniles; lateral line difficult to detect.  

Two dorsal fins, first dorsal above eyes, consisting of prominent four-edged spine with row of strong downward-directed barbs along each edge, spine wholly received into deep groove when depressed, second dorsal widely separated from first, of moderate length, moderately elevated anteriorly in males, outer margin slightly convex and not elevated anteriorly in females; anal fin similar to and opposing second dorsal; caudal fin truncate. Pectoral fins moderately small, rounded. Pelvic fins rudimentary, rudiment prominent, immovably attached to rear end of pelvis. 

Size

To 32 cm.

Colour

Males brown to blackish blue, with numerous blue lines and spots; prominent white to pale blue band from each eye to toothbrush-like patch of bristles on side, similarly coloured blotch near pectoral fin; caudal fin dusky with pale rear border. Females yellowish brown to brown, usually with scattered pale blotches and dark brown spots on side of body. Juveniles similar to females but usually with broad white stripe extending from chin to caudal peduncle as well.

Species Citation

Monacanthus vittiger Castelnau 1873,  Australia. 4. Fishes of South Australia. Proc. Zool. Acclim. Soc. Vict. 2: .81. Type locality: Gulf St Vincent, South Australia.

Resources

Australian Faunal Directory

Toothbrush Leatherjacket, Acanthaluteres vittiger (Castelnau 1873)

References


  • Castelnau, F.L. de 1873. Contribution to the ichthyology of Australia. 4. Fishes of South Australia.Proceedings of the Zoological and Acclimatisation Society of Victoria 2: 59-82.
  • Coleman, N. 1980. Australian Sea Fishes South of 30ºS. Lane Cove, NSW : Doubleday Australia Pty Ltd 309 pp.
  • Edgar, G.J. 2008. Australian Marine Life: the plants and animals of temperate waters. Sydney : Reed New Holland 2, 624 pp.
  • Edgar, G.J. & Shaw, C. 1995. The production and tropic ecology of shallow-water fish assemblages in southern Australia. III. General relationships between sediments, seagrasses, invertebrates and fishes. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol. 194: 107-131.
  • Hutchins, J.B. 1977. Descriptions of three new genera and eight new species of monacanthid fishes from Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum 5(1): 3-58 figs 1-13 (as Penicipelta vittiger)
  • Hutchins, J.B. 1994. Family Monacanthidae. pp. 866-891 figs 767-787 in Gomon, M.F., Glover, C.J.M. & Kuiter, R.H (eds). The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. Adelaide : State Printer 992 pp. 810 figs.
  • Hutchins, J.B. 2001. Biodiversity of shallow reef fish assemblages in Western Australia using a rapid censusing technique. Records of the Western Australian Museum 20: 247-270
  • Hutchins, J.B. 2008. Family Monacanthidae. pp. 822-841 in Gomon. M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.
  • Hutchins, J.B. & Thompson, M. 1983. The Marine and Estuarine Fishes of South-western Australia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 103 pp. 345 figs.
  • Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 437 pp.
  • Last, P.R., Scott, E.O.G. & Talbot, F.H. 1983. Fishes of Tasmania. Hobart : Tasmanian Fisheries Development Authority 563 pp. figs.
  •  Macleay, W.J. 1881. Descriptive catalogue of the fishes of Australia. Part 4. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 1 6(2): 202-387 (p. 314, as Monacanthus guntheri).
  • May, J.L. & Maxwell, J.G.H. 1986. Field Guide to Trawl Fish from Temperate Waters of Australia. Hobart : CSIRO Division of Marine Research 492 pp.
  • Whitley, G.P. 1947. New sharks and fishes from Western Australia. Part 3. The Australian Zoologist 11(2): 129-150 figs 1-3 pl. 11 (p. 58, as Penicipelta guntheri)
  • Quick Facts


    CAAB Code:37465002

    Depth:1-40 m

    Habitat:Rocky reefs, seagrass beds

    Max Size:35 cm TL

    Native:Endemic

    Species Maps

    CAAB distribution map