Unicorn Crestfish, Eumecichthys fiski (Günther 1890)

Head of a Unicorn Crestfish, Eumecichthys fiski. Source: Eric Woroch, US NMFS-PIRO Observer Program / Wikimedia Commons. License: Public Domain

A rare deepsea oarfish relative with an extremely long silvery ribbon-like body, a horn-like process extending froward on the head, bright red fins, and 24-60 darker vertical bands along the sides.
As a defence against predators, the Unicorn Crestfish can expel black fluid from around the anus.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2017, Eumecichthys fiski in Fishes of Australia, accessed 26 May 2024, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/Home/species/4329

Unicorn Crestfish, Eumecichthys fiski (Günther 1890)

More Info


In Australia, the only known specimen was washed ashore at Cheynes Beach, Albany, in 1989. Elsewhere the species is very rare, but thought to occur worldwide in depths of around 1000 m.

Species Citation

Lophotes fiski Günther 1890, Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1890(2): 244, pls 19-20. Type locality: Cape of Good Hope, Kalk Bay, South Africa.


Bray, D.J. 2017


Australian Faunal Directory

Unicorn Crestfish, Eumecichthys fiski (Günther 1890)


Bray, D.J. 2008. Family Lophotidae. pp. 298 in Gomon, M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds) Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.

Günther, A. 1890. Description of a new species of deep-sea fish from the Cape (Lophotes fiski). Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1890(2): 244-247 pls 19-20 Ref at BHL

Knudsen, S. 2015. Eumecichthys fiski. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T190107A60791470. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2015-4.RLTS.T190107A60791470.en. Downloaded on 06 May 2017.

Olney, J.E. 1999. Families Veliferidae, Lamprididae, Stylephoridae, Lophotidae, Radiicephalidae, Trachipteridae, Regalecidae. pp. 1966-1975 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:37270002

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Feeding:~1000 m


Max Size:150 cm TL

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Species Maps

CAAB distribution map