Semi-armed Flathead, Leviprora semermis (De Vis 1883)

A Semi-armed Flathead, Leviprora semermis, from Shark Bay, Western Australia, depth 6–7 m, WAM P.26653- 001, 352 mm SL, collected from. Source: Barry Hutchins / Western Australian Museum. License: CC By Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike

A pale brown flathead with several dark brown bands across the back, indistinct small spots along the side, a broad oblique brown band on the first dorsal fin, brown spots and short lines on the second dorsal fin, small dark spots forming bands on the pectoral fins, a pale anal fin with indistinct larger spots basally, and small dark spots and short lines forming irregular bands on the caudal fin. This species lacks a distinct brown band across the top of the head through the eyes.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Leviprora semermis in Fishes of Australia, accessed 29 May 2024,

Semi-armed Flathead, Leviprora semermis (De Vis 1883)

More Info


Endemic to southwestern Australia, from south of Point Dover, Great Australian Bight, to west of Cape Lesueur, Shark Bay, Western Australia, at depths of 16–50 m.


Dorsal fin I, VII, 12; Anal fin 12; Caudal fin 11 (branched rays); Pectoral fin 20-21; Pelvic fin I, 5;Lateral line scales (pored) 52-55; Gill rakers 1 + 5-6 = 6-7.
Preocular spine present.


Head and body slightly pale brown dorsally, white ventrally. Body with several dark brown bands dorsally. Lateral side of body with indistinct small brownish spots. Distinct band across eyes and interorbit on dorsal surface of head absent. First and second dorsal fins with brownish rays and transparent membrane; former with a broad brown oblique band; latter with brown spots and short lines. Pectoral fin with pale brown rays and paler membrane, with small darker spots tending to form bands. Pectoral fin brownish, with small darker spots. Anal fin pale, distally dusky, with indistinct larger spots basally. Caudal fin slightly darker brown, with partly paler membrane and small darker spots and short lines, tending to form irregular bands.


This species has been taken as bycatch in bottom trawls.

Similar Species

Differs from Leviprora inops by the number of pectoral-fin rays (18–19 in L. inops vs. 20–21 in L. semermis), the preocular spine (absent vs. present), fleshy sensory tubes on the cheek region (absent vs. developed), number of ducts of pored scales in the lateral line (one vs. two) and ratio of orbital diameter/interorbital width (2.3–4.7 vs. 1.5–2.8, both tending to decrease with growth).

Species Citation

Platycephalus semermis De Vis 1883, Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 8(2): 285. Type locality: Neotype, north end of Long Island, Houtman Abrolhos, WA (28°29′S, 113°46′E), 30–33 m depth.


Bray, D.J. 2020

Semi-armed Flathead, Leviprora semermis (De Vis 1883)


De Vis, C.W. 1883. Description of new genera and species of Australian fishes. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 8(2): 283-289. See ref at BHL

Gomon, M.F. 2008. Family Platycephalidae. pp. 515-521 in Gomon, M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp. (as Leviprora inops, in part)

Hutchins, J.B. 1990. Fish survey of South Passage, Shark Bay, Western Australia. pp. 263-278 in Berry, P.F., Bradshaw, S.D. & Wilson, B.R. (eds). Research in Shark Bay: Report of the France-Australe Bicentenary Expedition Committee. Perth : Western Australian Museum. (as Leviprora inops)

Hutchins, J.B. & Swainston, R. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete field guide for anglers and divers. Perth : Swainston Publishing 180 pp. (as Leviprora inops, in part)

Kuiter, R.H. 1994. Family Platycephalidae. pp. 514-523 figs 458-465 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. (as Leviprora inops, in part)

Imamura, H. & Moore, G.I. 2020. Taxonomic revision of the flathead genus Leviprora Whitley 1931, with recognition of Leviprora semermis (De Vis 1883) as a valid species (family Platycephalidae). Ichthyological Research

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37296063

Danger:Venomous spines

Depth:15-50 m

Habitat:Reef associated, sandy areas

Max Size:35 cm SL


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