Filamentous Blenny, Cirripectes filamentosus (Alleyne & Macleay 1877)

Other Names: Collared Blenny, Dusky Blenny, Red-lipped Fringed-blenny

Filamentous Blenny,Cirripectes filamentosus, at Reunion Island. Source: zsispeo / Flickr. License: CC BY Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike

A brown blenny with filaments on the dorsal fin spines, red spots on the snout and cheeks, yellowish-brown bars below eyes, no spots on the body, a yellow inner iris ring, a red outer iris ring, yellowish pectoral fins, anterior half of caudal fin brown, distal half with yellow upper rays and reddish lower rays.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2018, Cirripectes filamentosus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 21 Mar 2023,

Filamentous Blenny, Cirripectes filamentosus (Alleyne & Macleay 1877)

More Info


Houtman Abrohlos islands, Western Australia, around the tropical north, to One Tree Island, southern Queensland and reefs in the Coral Sea. Elsewhere the species occurs in the tropical, Indo-west Pacific - Red Sea, Persian Gulf, Madagascar and Mauritius, the Indo-australian Archipelago, to the Solomon Islands, New Caledonia, and north to Taiwan and Japan.
Inhabits continental coral and rocky reefs and rock pools in depths to 20 m. 


Dorsal fin XI-XIII, 13-16; Anal fin II, 14-17; Pectoral fin 15; Pelvic fin I, 3-4; Caudal fin procurrent rays 8-14; Gill rakers 21-27; Vertebrae 10-11 + 19-21 = 29-31.
Body depth at anal-fin origin 3.6-3.8 in SL; lower lip smooth mesially, plicate laterally; upper lip crenulae 26-50. Cephalic sensory pore system simple. Cirri: supraorbital 4-13; nasal 4-34; nuchal 22-39, in 4 groups, dorsal-most groups sometimes unconnected at their bases, slightly expanded nuchal flap at bases of ventral-most cirri, 2 pores behind nuchal flap.
Dorsal-fin membrane attached to caudal fin, with distinct notch above last spine, first spine almost equal higher than second; most dorsal-fin spines filamentous; last pleural rib on 11th vertebral centrum, last epipleural rib on 13-17th.  
Lateral line without scales and scalelike flaps, Llat tubes 0-5 (rarely up to 8), canal ends below 12th dorsal spine to 11th dorsal ray.  


Brown overall, with red spots only on cheeks and snout, inner ring of iris yellow, outer ring red, yellowish-brown bars below eyes; pectoral fins yellowish; anterior half of caudal fin brown, distal half with yellow upper rays and reddish lower rays.




The specific name filamentosus is from 'filum' meaning thread, presumably in reference to the filamentous dorsal-fin spines of adults.

Species Citation

Salarias filamentosus Alleyne & Macleay 1877, Proc. Linn. Soc. N. S. W. 1(3–4): 337, pl. 14(1). Type locality: Cape York, Queensland.


Bray, D.J. 2018


Australia Faunal Directory

Filamentous Blenny, Cirripectes filamentosus (Alleyne & Macleay 1877)


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

Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2012. Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth : Tropical Reef Research 3 vols, 1260 pp.

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. 

Alleyne, H.G. & Macleay, W.J. 1877. The ichthyology of the Chevert Expedition. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 1(3–4): 261-281, 321-359, pls 3-9, 10-17 Ref. at BHL

Grant, E.M. 1975. Guide to Fishes. Brisbane : Queensland Government, Co-ordinator General’s Department 640 pp. 

Fricke, R. 2010. Cirripectes filamentosus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T155186A4739095. Downloaded on 07 July 2018.

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

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 507 pp. figs. 

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 557 pp. figs. 

Springer, V.G. 2001. Blenniidae. pp. 3538-3546 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.

Williams, J.T. 1988. Revision and phylogenetic relationships of the blenniid fish genus Cirripectes. Indo-Pacific Fishes 17: 1-78 figs 1-21 col. pls 1-7

Williams, J.T. 1993. Cirripectes alleni, a new species of blennid fish from the northern coast of Western Australia. Revue Française d'Aquariologie et Herpétologie 20(2): 61-64 figs 1-10

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37408013

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:1-20 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:7.5 cm SL

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