Luminous Conger, Lumiconger arafura Castle & Paxton 1984

Other Names: Black Conger-eel

Luminous Conger, Lumiconger arafura. Source: Australian National Fish Collection, CSIRO. License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial

A bioluminescent conger eel with a very slender tail, the anus positioned well before the midbody, and few cephalic pores. The Luminous Conger is unique in having a deeply curved premaxillary-ethmoid bone bearing a long tooth patch that is completely exposed on the underside of the long slender snout when the mouth is closed.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2022, Lumiconger arafura in Fishes of Australia, accessed 23 Jul 2024,

Luminous Conger, Lumiconger arafura Castle & Paxton 1984

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Endemic to northern Australia, from north of Joseph Bonaparte Gulf, Western Australia, to north of Groote Eylandt, Northern Territory. Inhabits soft sediment areas on the continental shelf.


Benthic shrimps were found in the stomach.


Taken as bycatch in commercial trawls.


The specific name arafura refers to the area in which most of the specimens were trawled.

Species Citation

Lumiconger arafura Castle & Paxton 1984, Copeia 1984(1): 73, figs 1-6. Type locality: North of Smith Point, off Cobourg Peninsula, Northern Territory, Australia, 12°58'S, 132°10'E, depth 27 m. 


Bray, D.J. 2022


Atlas of Living Australia

Luminous Conger, Lumiconger arafura Castle & Paxton 1984


Castle, P.H.J. & Paxton, J.R. 1984. A new genus and species of luminescent eel (Pisces : Congridae) from the Arafura Sea, Northern Australia. Copeia 1984(1): 72-81 figs 1-6

Larson, H.K., Williams, R.S. & Hammer, M.P. 2013. An annotated checklist of the fishes of the Northern Territory, Australia. Zootaxa 3696(1): 1-293 

McCosker, J., Tighe, K. & Smith, D.G. 2019. Lumiconger arafura. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019: e.T199143A2563530. Accessed on 19 October 2022

Russell, B.C. & Houston, W. 1989. Offshore fishes of the Arafura Sea. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 6(1): 69-84

Sainsbury, K.J., Kailola, P.J. & Leyland, G.G. 1984. Continental Shelf Fishes of Northern and North-Western Australia. Canberra : Fisheries Information Service 375 pp. figs & pls.

Smith, D.G. 1999. Families Colocongridae, Derichthyidae, Muraenesocidae, Nemichtyhyidae, Congridae, Nettastomatidae, Serrivomeridae, Cyematidae, Saccopharyngidae, Eurypharyngidae, Monognathidae. pp. 1670-1697 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 3 pp. 1397-2068.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37067005


Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:27-152 m

Habitat:Soft bottom areas

Max Size:27 cm TL


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