Western Galaxias, Galaxias occidentalis Ogilby 1899

Other Names: Western Jollytail, Western Minnow

Western Galaxias, Galaxias occidentalis. Source: Neil Armstrong. License: All rights reserved


An olive-green to tannish brown Galaxias with a series of irregular darker bars along sides, and a silvery belly.

Cite this page as:
Gomon, M.F. & Bray, D.J. 2020, Galaxias occidentalis in Fishes of Australia, accessed 24 Mar 2023, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/3676

Western Galaxias, Galaxias occidentalis Ogilby 1899

More Info


Endemic to south-western Australia, from Known only from Wauchinnicup Creek east of Albany in the south, to the Arrowsmith River north of Perth. Forms moderate-sized schools in fast flowing water near rapids and waterfalls, slower moving streams and pools around submerged vegetation and woody debris; also lakes and wetlands; tolerates brackish conditions.


Dorsal fin 10-12; Anal fin 12-18 (usually 14-16); Pectoral fin 10-15 (usually 13-14); Gill rakers 13-14.

Body elongate and slender; greatest depth 6.0-6.5 in SL; head flattened; snout moderately pointed; lateral canine teeth present in jaws and enlarged fangs at middle of lower jaw; lower jaw protruding slightly; caudal peduncle long. Scales absent. Caudal fin truncate or slightly emarginate.


Maximum size to 19 cm, commonly to 9 cm TL.


Olive green to tan-brown overall with a series of darker bars on upper sides (sometimes pale and indistinct) with a silvery body, amber fins and golden eye.


Feed mainly on insects and small crustaceans.


Spends entire lifecycle in freshwater.

Species Citation

Galaxias occidentalis Ogilby, 1899, Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W. 24(1): 157. Type locality: Perth, Western Australia.


Gomon, M.F. & Bray, D.J. 2020


Atlas of Living Australia

Western Galaxias, Galaxias occidentalis Ogilby 1899


Allen, G.R. 1982. Inland Fishes of Western Australia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 86 pp. 6 figs 20 pls. 

Allen, G.R. 1989. Freshwater Fishes of Australia. Neptune, New Jersey : T.F.H. Publications 240 pp., 63 pls. 

Allen, G.R., Midgley, S.H. & Allen, M. 2002. Field Guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Australia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 394 pp.

Beatt,y S.J. & Morgan, D.L. 2016. Rapid proliferation of an endemic galaxiid following eradication of an alien piscivore (Perca fluviatilis) from a reservoir. Journal of Fish Biology, 8 pp, doi:10.1111/jfb.13214

Brown, C. 2019. Galaxias occidentalis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019: e.T123355786A123382656. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-3.RLTS.T123355786A123382656.en. Downloaded on 31 August 2020.

Gill, H.S. & Neira, F.J. 1998. Galaxiidae (Galaxiinae): southern galaxias. pp. 70-77 in Neira, F.J., Miskiewicz, A.G. & Trnski, T. Larvae of temperate Australian fishes: laboratory guide for larval fish identification. Nedlands, Western Australia : University of Western Australia press 474 pp.

McDowall, R.M. 2006. Crying wolf, crying foul, or crying shame: alien salmonids and a biodiversity crisis in the southern cool-temperate galaxioid fishes? Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries 16: 233-422 

McDowall, R.M. & Frankenberg, R.S. 1981. The galaxiid fishes of Australia. Records of the Australian Museum 33(10): 443-605 figs 1-47 DOI: 10.3853/j.0067-1975.33.1981.195

Merrick, J.R. & Schmida, G.E. 1984. Australian Freshwater Fishes Biology and Management. Sydney : J.R. Merrick 409 pp. figs 280 col. figs.

Morgan, D.L., Beatty, S.J., Klunzinger, M.W., Allen, M.G. & Burnham, Q.E. 2011. A Field Guide to Freshwater Fishes, Crayfishes & Mussels of South-Western Australia. Murdoch, Western Australia : SERCUL & Freshwater Fish Group & Fish Health Unit (Murdoch University) 80 pp.

Morgan, D.L., Gill, H.S. & Potter, I.C. 1998. Distribution, identification and biology of freshwater fishes in south-western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 56: 1-97.

Morgan, D.L., Unmack, P.J., Beatty, S.J., Ebner, B.C., Allen, M.G., Keleher, J.J., Donaldson, J.A. & Murphy, J. 2014. An overview of the ‘freshwater fishes’ of Western Australia. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia 97: 263–278

Ogilby, J.D. 1899. Contributions to Australian Ichthyology. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 24(1): 154-186. See ref at BHL

Pen, L.J. & Potter, I.C. 1991. Biology of the western minnow, Galaxias occidentalis Ogilby (Teleostei: Galaxiidae), in a south-western Australian river. 1. Reproductive biology. Hydrobiologia 211(2): 77-88. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00037364

Pen, L.J. & Potter, I.C. 1991. Biology of the western minnow, Galaxias occidentalis Ogilby (Teleostei: Galaxiidae), in a south-western Australian river. 2. Size and age composition, growth and diet. Hydrobiologia 211(2): 89-100. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00037365

Raadik, T.A. 2014. Fifteen from one: a revision of the Galaxias olidus Günther, 1866 complex (Teleostei, Galaxiidae) in south-eastern Australia recognises three previously described taxa and describes 12 new species. Zootaxa 3898(1): 1-198 https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.3898.1.1

Unmack, P.J. 2001. Biogeography of Australian freshwater fishes. Journal of Biogeography 28: 1053-1089

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37102017

Behaviour:Freshwater streams, lakes, wetlands


Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Max Size:19 cm TL


Species Image Gallery

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map