Indian Driftfish, Ariomma indicum (Day 1870)

Other Names: Indian Ariomma, Indian Eyebrow-fish

An Indian Driftfish, Ariomma indicum, from . Source: . License:

A silvery driftfish with a bluish tinge on the back, greyish fins, black inside the gill cover, and the iris with two golden crescents separated by a vertical dark region. Large individuals may be uniformly blackish.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2023, Ariomma indicum in Fishes of Australia, accessed 29 Jan 2023,

Indian Driftfish, Ariomma indicum (Day 1870)

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Montebello Island, Western Australia, east of Dunk Island, Queensland. Elsewhere the species occurs in the tropical, Indo-west Pacific.Small schools inhabit muddy areas on the continental shelf and upper slope, and may be pelagic at night and demersal by day.


Dorsal fin X-XI + I,13-16; Anal fin III, 14-15.
Body depth usually 2.0–2.4 in SL; teeth absent from roof of mouth; eyes large, surrounded by thick adipose tissue; caudal peduncle short, almost square in cross-section with two fleshy keels at base of caudal fin.
Dorsal-fin spines slender, soft dorsal and anal rays short; pelvic fins short, not reaching anus; caudal fin lobes not capable of folding into a single lobe.


Feeds mainly on zooplankton. 


The species is named indica in reference to the type locality, Madras, India.

Species Citation

Cubiceps indicus Day 1870, Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1870: 690. Type locality: Madras, India.


Bray, D.J. 2023


Atlas of Living Australia

Indian Driftfish, Ariomma indicum (Day 1870)


Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 292 pp. 106 pls.

Allen, G.R. & Swainston, R. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A field guide for anglers and divers. Perth, WA : Western Australian Museum vi 201 pp., 70 pls. 

Day, F. 1870. On the fishes of the Andaman Islands. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1870: 677-705 See ref at BHL

Ferraris, C.J. Jr, McGrouther, M.A. & Parkinson, K.L. 2000. A critical review of the types and putative types of southern Asian marine and freshwater fish species in the Australian Museum named by Francis Day. Records of the Australian Museum 52: 289-306 

Gloerfelt-Tarp, T. & Kailola, P.J. 1984. Trawled Fishes of Southern Indonesia and Northwest Australia. Jakarta : Dir. Gen. Fish. (Indonesia), German Tech. Coop., Aust. Dev. Ass. Bur. 406 pp. 

Haedrich, R.L. 1967. The stromateoid fishes; systematics and a classification. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard 135(2): 31-139 figs 1-56 

Haedrich, R.L. 1967. The stromateoid fishes: systematics and a classification. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard 135(5): 31-139 

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.

Last, P.R. 2001. Nomeidae, Ariommatidae, Tetragonuridae. pp. 3771-3785 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, T.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 6 pp. 3381-4218. 

Parin, N.V. & Piotrovsky, A.S. 2004. Stromateoid fishes (suborder Stromateoidei) of the Indian Ocean (species composition, distribution, biology, and fisheries). Journal of Ichthyology 44(Suppl. 1): 33-62 

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.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37447007

Depth:20-300 m

Habitat:Benthopelagic, oceanodromous

Max Size:25 cm SL

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CAAB distribution map