Black Halosaur, Halosauropsis macrochir (Günther 1878)

Other Names: Abyssal Halosaur

Black Halosaur, Halosauropsis macrochir, collected in the Tasman Sea in 2003 on the NORFANZ Expedition. Source: Robin McPhee / NORFANZ Founding Parties. License: All rights reserved

A greyish-black to bluish-black halosaur, with the top of head, gill isthmus and branchiostegal membranes black, and no scales on top of the head.

Cite this page as:
Dianne J. Bray, Halosauropsis macrochir in Fishes of Australia, accessed 27 May 2024,

Black Halosaur, Halosauropsis macrochir (Günther 1878)

More Info


Dorsal fin 11-13. Lateral line with a deeply pigmented sheath; scales present on the opercular bone, absent from top of the head.


Feeds on crustaceans, bony fishes, polychaete worms and cephalopod molluscs.

Species Citation

Halosaurus macrochir Günther 1878, Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. 5 2(2, 22, 28): 250. Type locality: off the Strait of Gibraltar. 


Dianne J. Bray


Australian Faunal Directory

Black Halosaur, Halosauropsis macrochir (Günther 1878)


Bergstad OA, Clark L, Hansen HØ, Cousins N (2012) Distribution, population biology, and trophic ecology of the deepwater demersal fish Halosauropsis macrochir (Pisces: Halosauridae) on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. PLoS ONE 7(2): e31493. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0031493 PDF open access

Gomon, M.F. 1994. Families Halosauridae, Notacanthidae, Clupeidae, Engraulidae, Gonorynchidae, Plotosidae, Salmonidae. pp. 215-231 figs 192-206 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.

Günther, A. 1878. Preliminary notices of deep-sea fishes collected during the voyage of H.M.S. Challenger. Annals and Magazine of Natural History 5 2(2, 22, 28): 17-28, 179-187, 248-251.

Machida Y, Okamura O, Ohta S (1988) Notes on Halosauropsis macrochir (Halosauridae: Notacanthiformes) from Japan. Japanese Journal of Ichthyology 35: 78–82.

Paulin, C.D. & Moreland, J.M. 1979. Halosauridae of the south-west Pacific (Pisces: Teleostei : Notocanthiformes). New Zealand Journal of Zoology 6(2): 267-271 fig. 1

Sedberry GR, Musick JA (1978) Feeding strategies of some demersal fishes of the continental slope and rise off the mid-Atlantic coast of the USA. Marine Biology 44: 357–375.

Williams, A., Last, P.R., Gomon, M.F. & Paxton, J.R. 1996. Species composition and checklist of the demersal ichthyofauna of the continental slope off Western Australia (20–35º). Records of the Western Australian Museum 18: 135-155.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37081003

Depth:686-3200 m

Habitat:Deep-sea benthopelagic

Max Size:90 cm TL

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