Smooth Cardinalfish, Vincentia macrocauda Allen 1987

Smooth Cardinalfish, Vincentia macrocauda. Source: Barry Hutchins / Western Australian Museum. License: All rights reserved

A slender mottled reddish to pink cardinalfish with the outer half of the first dorsal fin black, reddish to dusky reddish-brown second dorsal, caudal, anal and pelvic fins covered in pale spots, and a very long tail base. The body is mostly covered in cycloid (smooth) scales.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2019, Vincentia macrocauda in Fishes of Australia, accessed 15 Jul 2020,

Smooth Cardinalfish, Vincentia macrocauda Allen 1987

More Info


Found in temperate waters of Australia's southern coast, from the Gulf St Vincent, South Australia, to about Cheyne Beach, Western Australia, in depths to 25 m.


Dorsal fin VII + I, 9; Anal fin II, 8- 9; Caudal fin 17; Pectoral fin 14-15; Pelvic fin I, 5; Gill rakers (first arch) 3-5 + 12-13 (total rakers 15-18); Lateral line scales 25 plus 2 additional scales at caudal fin base.

Body slender (28–32% SL), caudal peduncle elongate (about 33% SL); head length 34–36% SL; eye diameter 34–38% HL; scales cycloid to weakly ctenoid, those in and adjacent to lateral line of similar size; 8–9 scales below lateral line; 2nd dorsal fin slightly larger than 1st, completely separate.


To 10 cm SL


Overall reddish with a bronze hue; fins reddish to dusky red, with clear to faint yellowish spots except on pectoral fins; first dorsal fin dusky brown near base, outer half blackish.


Carnivore - feeds on zooplankton and benthic invertebrates.


The sexes are separate, and fertilisation is external. Like all cardinalfishes, the male broods the developing eggs in his mouth, and doesn't feed until they hatch.


Of no interest to fisheries.



Similar Species

Differs from all other species of Vincentia in having a very long caudal peduncle and mostly cycloid (smooth) scales on the body.


The specific name macrocauda is from the Greek macros meaning 'long' in reference to the elongate caudal peduncle.

Species Citation

Vincentia macrocauda Allen 1987, Mem. Mus. Vic. 48(1): 7, fig. 4. Type locality: Cheyne Beach, Western Australia.


Bray, D.J. 2019


Australian Faunal Directory

Smooth Cardinalfish, Vincentia macrocauda Allen 1987


Allen, G.R. 1987. New Australian Fishes. Part 2. Four new species of Apogonidae. Memoirs of Museum Victoria 48(1): 3-8 Open access

Allen, G.R. & Gomon, M.F. 2008. Family Apogonidae. pp. 557-561 in Gomon. M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp.

Gomon, M.F. 1994. Family Apogonidae. pp. 562-571 figs 499-506 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

Hutchins, J.B. 1994. A survey of the nearshore reef fish fauna of Western Australia's west and south coasts — The Leeuwin Province. Records of the Western Australian Museum, Supplement 46: 1-66 figs 1-6

Mabuchi, K., Fraser, T.H., Song, H., Azuma, Y. & Nishida, M. 2014. Revision of the systematics of the cardinalfishes (Percomorpha: Apogonidae) based on molecular analyses and comparative reevaluation of morphological characters. Zootaxa 3846(2): 151–203

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37327122

Biology:Males - mouth brooders

Depth:8-25 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:10 cm SL


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