Blackline Cucumberfish, Paraulopus melanogrammus Gomon & Sato 2004

Holotype of the Blackline Cucumberfish, Paraulopus melanogrammus, female, CSIRO H.3644-10, from east of Rockingham Bay, Queensland, depth 303–320 m.. Source: Australian National Fish Collection, CSIRO. License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike


An opalescent-white cucumberfish with  a pale olive-brown back, darker blotches on the side, a greyish dorsal fin with a distinctive black leading edge, a white basal band, and a broad white margin, and a white anal fin. Males have a narrow black margin on the dorsal fin, and a broad tapering black band on the pelvic fin. In juveniles, the black leading edge on the dorsal fin is broken by a pale space midway along the fin.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. & Hicks, T. 2020, Paraulopus melanogrammus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 04 Mar 2024,

Blackline Cucumberfish, Paraulopus melanogrammus Gomon & Sato 2004

More Info


Eastern Australia, from just north of Townsville, Queensland, to off Newcastle, New South Wales, in depths of 184-606 m. Elsewhere the species occurs in the Chesterfield Islands, Coral Sea, New Caledonia.


Dorsal fin 11; Anal fin 9-10; Caudal fin 18; Pectoral fin 15-17; Gill rakers 4-5 + 15-17, upper limb with 3 fully formed rakers and one or two rudiments; Lateral line scales 47-49; Scales above lateral line 4.5; Scale rows on cheek 3; Vertebrae 47-49.

Body depth 12.8-17.7& SL; supraocular ridge above middle three-quarters of eye; eye large 2.5-3.1 in head; adipose fin moderately small, 1.7-3.7 % SL; anal fin of moderate height, 20.1-24.9 % SL; pelvic fin distinctly longer than pectoral fin.


Maximum Length recorded 243 mm SL.


Freshly caught: opalescent white with pale olive brown upper body, scales on nape and back with slightly darker margins; underside of abdomen and caudal peduncle posterior to interpelvic area tan. Dorsal fin white separated by pale grey and with distinctive black leading edge. Anal fin white. Caudal fin grey with white ventral margin, white dorsal margin basally on upper lobe and black dorsal edge on upper lobe distally. Pectoral fins translucent with slightly grey cast. Pelvic fins white with grey cast centrally. Male colouration as in females, but with black tip to dorsal fin and broad black band on pelvic fins.


The specific name melanogrammus is from from the Greek melano (= black) and gramme (= line), in reference to the distinctive black leading edge on the dorsal fin of this species.

Species Citation

Paraulopus melanogrammus Gomon & Sato 2004, Records of the Australian Museum 56 (2): 196, Figs. 1-2, East of Rockingham Bay, Queensland.


Bray, D.J. & Hicks, T. 2020


Atlas of Living Australia

Blackline Cucumberfish, Paraulopus melanogrammus Gomon & Sato 2004


Fricke, R., Kulbicki, M. & Wantiez, L. 2011. Checklist of the fishes of New Caledonia, and their distribution in the Southwest Pacific Ocean (Pisces). Stuttgarter Beiträge zur Naturkunde A, Neue Serie 4: 341-463

Gomon, M.F. & Sato, T. 2004. A new cucumberfish (Paraulopidae) of the Paraulopus nigripinnis complex from central eastern Australia. Records of the Australian Museum 56(2): 195-199 DOI: 10.3853/j.0067-1975.56.2004.1417.

Ho, H., Holleman, W., Fennessy, S., Russell, B. & Maunde, C. 2020. Paraulopus melanogrammus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2020: e.T123334762A123335036. Downloaded on 19 October 2020.

Last, P.R., Pogonoski, J.J., Gledhill, D.C. White, W.T. & Walker, C.J. 2014. The deepwater demersal ichthyofauna of the western Coral Sea. Zootaxa 3887 (2): 191–224

Sato, T., Gomon, M.F. & Nakabo, T. 2010. Two new Australian species of the Paraulopus nigripinnis complex (Aulopiformes: Paraulopidae). Ichthyological Research 57(3): 254-262

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37120015

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:184-606 m

Habitat:Continental Shelf & upper Slope

Max Size:25 cm SL

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