Dragon's Beard Fish, Pterois lunulata Temminck & Schlegel 1843

Other Names: Japanese Lionfish, Luna Lion Fish

A Dragon's Beard Fish, Pterois lunulata, at Osezaki, Izu Peninsula, Japan, October 2014, depth 9m. Source: Izuzuki / www.izuzuki.com. License: CC by Attribution-ShareAlike

A lionfish with pale-centred scales forming a net-like pattern on the bands on the body, pectoral-fin rays with V-like markings, and spotted soft dorsal, anal and caudal fins in large adults.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2017, Pterois lunulata in Fishes of Australia, accessed 23 May 2022, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/3649

Dragon's Beard Fish, Pterois lunulata Temminck & Schlegel 1843

More Info


Off Onslow, Western Australia, to north of the Cobourg Peninsula, Northern Territory.  Elsewhere the species occurs in the west Pacific from Korea and southern Hokkaido in Japan, southward through China, Taiwan, and Indonesia, to northern Australia and New Caledonia. Inhabits open areas with isolated reef outcrops, or soft-bottom substrates at moderate depths.


Carnivore - feeds on fishes and crustaceans.

Species Citation

Pterois lunulata Temminck & Schlegel 1843, Fauna Japonica 4(2–4): 45, pl. 19 (figs. 1, 3). Type locality: Nagasaki Bay, Japan. 


Bray, D.J. 2017


Australian Faunal Directory

Dragon's Beard Fish, Pterois lunulata Temminck & Schlegel 1843


Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2008. Pterois andover, a new species of scorpionfish (Pisces: Scorpaenidae) from Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. Aqua, International Journal of Ichthyology 13(3-4): 127-138.

Boeseman, M. 1947. Revision of the fishes collected by Burger and van Siebold in Japan. Zoologische Mededelingen (Leiden) 28: 1-242 pls 1-5

Fricke, R., Kulbicki, M. & Wantiez, L. 2011. Checklist of the fishes of New Caledonia, and their distribution in the Southwest Pacific Ocean (Pisces). Stuttgarter Beiträge zur Naturkunde. Serie A (Biologie) Neue Serie 4: 341-463.

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.

Poss, S.G. 1999. Families Scorpaenidae, Caracanthidae, Aploactinidae. pp. 2291-2358 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. 4 pp. 2069-2790. 

Temminck, C.J. & Schlegel, H. 1843. Pisces. 21-72 pls 7A-36 in Siebold, P. Fr de (ed.) Fauna Japonica. Leyden : Apud Arnz & Socios Vol. 4(2–4).

Motomura, H. 2010. Pterois lunulata. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T155129A4720732. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2010-4.RLTS.T155129A4720732.en. Downloaded on 04 February 2017.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37287104

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Danger:Venomous spines

Depth:27-172 m

Fishing:Aquarium fish

Max Size:35 cm TL

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CAAB distribution map