Genus Polyprion


Both species of the genus occur in Australian waters. Species have a prominent horizontal ridge ending in a strong, flat spine on the rectangular-shaped opercle.

Body oblong; head large; mouth large, oblique; lower jaw projecting, maxilla expanded, reaching below hind margin of orbit; teeth villiform, in broad bands on jaws and palatines, tooth patch on vomer and tongue; scales small, ctenoid, covering head, body, fin bases, and extending along inter-ray membranes of all fins.

Dorsal fin rays XI-XII, 11-12; anal fin spines small, 3rd longest, 9 or 10 soft rays; caudal fin rounded in juveniles, truncate or slightly emarginated in adults. Vertebrae 13 + 14.

Sexes separate. Juveniles pelagic to large size, with camouflage coloration.

Author: Martin F. Gomon & Dianne J. Bray

Cite this page as:
Martin F. Gomon & Dianne J. Bray, Polyprion in Fishes of Australia, accessed 03 Mar 2024,


Oken, L. 1817. V. Kl. Fische. Isis (Oken) 8(148): 1779-1782
Roberts, C.D. 1989. Reproductive mode in the percomorph fish genus Polyprion Oken. Journal of Fish Biology 34(1): 1-9.

Roberts, C.D. 1986. Systematics of the percomorph fish genus Polyprion Oken, 1817. Ph.D. diss., Victoria University, Wellington, 283pp.

Roberts, C.D. 1993. Comparative morphology of spined scales and their phylogenetic significance in the Teleostei. Bulletin of Marine Science 52(1): 60-113

Roberts, C.D. & Gomon, M. F. 2008. Families Polyprionidae, Serranidae and Callanthiidae. pp. 534-549 in Gomon. M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.