Red Wide-bodied Pipefish, Stigmatopora harastii Short & Trevor-Jones 2020

A Red Wide-bodied Pipefish, Stigmatopora harastii, in Botany Bay, New South Wales, February 2021. Source: Erik Schlogl / License: CC By Attribution-NonCommercial

A deep red pipefish with large irregular white spots on top of the snout, and large, irregular white or red spots, or diffuse white markings on the side of head and anterior trunk rings. Males also have a row of distinct red elongated spots on the ventral midline of the first trunk ring, and a large cluster of distinct red spots on the ventral surface of the anterior trunk rings. Females have a few scattered small red spots on the ventral surface of the anterior trunk rings.
Video of Red Wide-bodied Pipefish swaying in the surge among fine red algae in Botany Bay, Sydney, New South Wales.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2023, Stigmatopora harastii in Fishes of Australia, accessed 23 May 2024,

Red Wide-bodied Pipefish, Stigmatopora harastii Short & Trevor-Jones 2020

More Info


Endemic to central New South Wales, known from Botany Bay to Bawley Point. 
Inhabits sandy areas between boulders and hard flat reefs in semi-exposed bay entrances and ocean embayments. Lives in close association with a species of red finger sponge and several species of red algae that grow in small isolated clumps. Individuals are extremely well-camouflaged, and sway in unison with the red algal fronds.


Dorsal fin 43–45; Anal fin 4; Pectoral fin 13–18; Trunk rings 18; Tail rings 68–71; Subdorsal rings: 12 trunk rings + 7–8 tail rings = 19–20.
Superior trunk and tail ridges continuous, not arched dorsally below the dorsal-fin base; lateral trunk ridge ends without deflection on the first tail ring; lateral tail ridge absent; inferior trunk and tail ridges continuous, the former largely located on the ventral portion of the trunk.
Dorsal-fin origin on 6th–7th trunk ring; lateral trunk ridge ending on first tail ring; pouch plates absent; brood pouch below anterior portion of tail; pouch plates absent.


The species is named after David Harasti, one of the first to recognize S. harastii as a new species, for recognition of "his efforts towards conservation of Syngnathidae in Australia, and for being an aficionado extraordinaire of his beloved genus Stigmatopora"

Species Citation

Stigmatopora harastii Short & Trevor-Jones 2020, ZooKeys 994: 107, figs 1-4. Type locality: “The Steps”, Kamay Botany Bay National Park, Kurnell, Botany Bay, NSW, Australia, 34°00'07.9"S, 151°13'41.4"E, 13.5 m.


Bray, D.J. 2023


Atlas of Living Australia

Red Wide-bodied Pipefish, Stigmatopora harastii Short & Trevor-Jones 2020


Short, G. & Trevor-Jones, A. 2020. Stigmatopora harastii, a new species of pipefish in facultative associations with finger sponges and red algae from New South Wales, Australia (Teleostei, Syngnathidae). ZooKeys 994: 105-123.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37282143

Biology:Males brood the eggs

Depth:10-25 m

Habitat:Reef associated, algae, sponges

Max Size:15 cm SL


Species Maps

CAAB distribution map