Yellowstriped Leatherjacket, Meuschenia flavolineata Hutchins 1977

Other Names: Orange-tailed Leatherjacket, Yellow-stripe Leatherjacket, Yellow-striped Leatherjacket, Yellowtail Leatherjacket, Yellow-tailed Leatherjacket

A female Yellowstriped Leatherjackets, Meuschenia flavolineata, in Geographe Bay, Western Australia. Source: Rick Stuart-Smith / Reef Life Survey. License: CC BY Attribution


A blackish to greenish-brown leatherjacket, with a large yellow or orange blotch on the tail base, often continued as a yellow stripe along the midsides.

Males have a patch of fine bristles and two pairs of large spines on the tail base. Females and juveniles lack the bristles and the spines are small to minute.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2022, Meuschenia flavolineata in Fishes of Australia, accessed 19 May 2024,

Yellowstriped Leatherjacket, Meuschenia flavolineata Hutchins 1977

More Info


Endemic to temperate waters of southern Australia, from Broughton Island, New South Wales, to Dongarra, Western Australia, including Tasmania.

Inhabits coastal macroalgal reefs, especially those offshore, in depths of 1-50 m. Often seen in pairs.


Dorsal fin II + 33-37' Anal fin 31-35; Caudal fin 12; Pectoral fin 11-12; Vertebrae 20.

Body rather elongate in males; body oblong, of moderate depth, somewhat deeper in females; very compressed, with a small ventral flap; caudal peduncle shallow. 

Head large, broadly pointed; eyes small; mouth very small; teeth large, central pair in both jaws pointed; gill openings in form of small slit mostly above each pectoral fin base. 

Skin velvety to touch; two pairs of enlarged spines on each side of caudal peduncle, spines curving forwards and preceded by dense patch of fine bristles in males, small to minute in females and juveniles; lateral line difficult to detect. 

Two dorsal fins, first dorsal above eyes, consisting of prominent spine with small to minute barbs, spine partly received into shallow groove when depressed, second dorsal widely separated from first, of moderate length, outer margin slightly convex, not elevated anteriorly; anal fin similar to and opposing second dorsal; caudal fin truncate. Pectoral fins moderately small, rounded. Pelvic fin rudiment small but obvious, immovably attached to rear end of pelvis.


To 30 cm TL


Adults blackish-brown to greenish-brown with a greenish-yellow to orange area on the caudal peduncle, often extending as a yellowish stripe along midside of body;  rays of dorsal and anal fins yellowish brown; caudal fin dark brown to black. Females with yellow blotch anteriorly. Juveniles usually pale greenish brown with small irregular pale blotches and spots on sides.


Feeds on benthic invertebrates.


Of no interest to fisheries.


The specific name flavolineata is from the Latin flavus (= yellow) and lineata (= lined), in reference to the yellow stripe along the sides of adults.

Species Citation

Meuschenia flavolineata Hutchins, 1977, Rec. West. Aust. Mus. 5(1): 40. Type locality: Middle Bank, 2 km SE of Rottnest Island, 32°05'S, 115°33'E, Western Australia, depth 15 m.


Bray, D.J. 2022


Atlas of Living Australia

Yellowstriped Leatherjacket, Meuschenia flavolineata Hutchins 1977


Coleman, N. 1980. Australian Sea Fishes South of 30ºS. Lane Cove, NSW : Doubleday Australia Pty Ltd 309 pp.

Edgar, G.J. 2008. Australian Marine Life: the plants and animals of temperate waters. Sydney : Reed New Holland 2, 624 pp.

Hoschke, A., Whisson, G. & Moore, G.I.  2019. Complete list of fishes from Rottnest Island. pp. 150-161 in Whisson, G. & Hoschke, A. (eds) The Rottnest Island fish book. 2nd ed. Perth : Aqua Research and Monitoring Services.

Hutchins, J.B. 1977. Descriptions of three new genera and eight new species of monacanthid fishes from Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum 5(1): 3-58 figs 1-13

Hutchins, J.B. 1994. A survey of the nearshore reef fish fauna of Western Australia's west and south coasts — The Leeuwin Province. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 46: 1-66 figs 1-6

Hutchins, J.B. 1994. Family Monacanthidae. pp. 866-891 figs 767-787 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.

Hutchins, J.B. 2001. Biodiversity of shallow reef fish assemblages in Western Australia using a rapid censusing technique. Records of the Western Australian Museum 20: 247-270

Hutchins, J.B. 2008. Family Monacanthidae. pp. 822-841 in Gomon. M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.

Hutchins, J.B. & Swainston, R. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete field guide for anglers and divers. Perth : Swainston Publishing 180 pp.

Hutchins, J.B. & Thompson, M. 1983. The Marine and Estuarine Fishes of South-western Australia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 103 pp. 345 figs.

Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 437 pp.

Last, P.R., Scott, E.O.G. & Talbot, F.H. 1983. Fishes of Tasmania. Hobart : Tasmanian Fisheries Development Authority 563 pp. figs.

Matsuura, K., Motomura, H. & Khan, M. 2019. Meuschenia flavolineata. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019: e.T79800615A79800618. Accessed on 10 January 2022.

May, J.L. & Maxwell, J.G.H. 1986. Field Guide to Trawl Fish from Temperate Waters of Australia. Hobart : CSIRO Division of Marine Research 492 pp.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37465035

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:1-50 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:30 cm TL


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