Eared Conger, Castleichthys auritus Smith 2004

An Eared Conger, Castleichthys auritus, from off north Western Australia. Source: Australian National Fish Collection, CSIRO. License: CC By Attribution-NonCommercial

A greyish-brown congrid eel becoming darker posteriorly, with a pale belly, a black tail tip, large black pectoral fins, a large eye, and a slender and flexible tail.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2022, Castleichthys auritus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 07 Dec 2022, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/1737

Eared Conger, Castleichthys auritus Smith 2004

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Northwest of the Dampier Archipelago to NE of Rowley Shoals, Western Australia.


Vertebrae: 128. 
Body moderately elongate; preanal length less than 40% TL; tip of tail slender and flexible, but not greatly attenuate or filiform; pectoral fin well developed; dorsal origin slightly behind tip of appressed pectoral fin; dorsaland anal-fin rays segmented; jaws equal, rictus below middle of eye; flange present on upper lip; skin of head without papillae or plicae; eye relatively large; posterior nostril at mid-eye level. Teeth small, not caniniform or molariform; maxillary teeth uniserial, mandibular teeth uniserial for most of length.


In preservative: Light greyish-brown, paler ventrally. Dorsal and anal fins with body colour anteriorly, becoming dark toward posterior part of tail, progressively darker posteriorly, becoming black at tip of tail. Pectoral fins conspicuously black. Gill opening, inside of mouth, and peritoneum pale.


The specific name is from the Latin auritus (= eared), in reference to the large, conspicuous pectoral fins, that resemble the ears of a rabbit or a mule.

Species Citation

Castleichthys auritus Smith 2004, Records of the Australian Museum 56: 144, figs 1-4. Type  locality: Northeast of Rowley Shoals, 16°53'S, 120°21'E, Western Australia, depth 396 m.


Bray, D.J. 2022


Atlas of Living Australia

Eared Conger, Castleichthys auritus Smith 2004


McCosker, J., Smith, D.G. & Tighe, K. 2019. Castleichthys auritus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019: e.T199218A2571259. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-1.RLTS.T199218A2571259.en. Accessed on 22 September 2022.

Smith, D.G. 2004. A new genus and species of congrid eel (Teleostei: Anguilliformes: Congridae) from Western Australia. Records of the Australian Museum 56: 143-146  https://doi.org/10.3853/j.0067-1975.56.2004.1416

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37067037

Conservation:IUCN Data Deficient

Depth:396-555 m

Habitat:Benthic, Continental Slope

Max Size:29 cm TL


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