Clouded Saury, Saurida nebulosa Valenciennes 1849

Other Names: Blotched Saury, Clouded Lizardfish, Nebulous Lizardfish

A Clouded Saury, Saurida nebulosa, at Lord Howe Island, February 2016. Source: John Turnbull / Flickr. License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike

A greyish Lizardfish mottled with brown on the back, three dark bars along the rear half of the body, and a series of dark blotches along the lower side with smaller dark blotches between on the anterior two-thirds of the body. The dark bars along the back in the Clouded Saury are usually narrower than those of the Gracile Lizardfish, Saurida gracilis.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2019, Saurida nebulosa in Fishes of Australia, accessed 21 Jun 2024,

Clouded Saury, Saurida nebulosa Valenciennes 1849

More Info


Cape York, Queensland, to Bermagui, New South Wales. Elsewhere the species occurs in the Indo-west-central Pacific.
Individuals inhabit sandy and silty areas in estuaries and coastal waters, including the mouths of freshwater streams, mangroves, seagrass beds, and sometimes coral reef lagoons.


Dorsal fin 10-11; Anal fin 9-10; Pectoral fin 11-13; Pelvic fin 9; Lateral-line scales 50-52.Dorsal-fin originating behind midpoint between snout and adipose fin; teeth visible when mouth closed; pectoral fin just reaching level of origin of pelvic fins. 

Species Citation

Saurida nebulosa Valenciennes in Cuvier & Valenciennes 1849, Histoire Naturelle des Poissons Vol. 22: 504, pl. 648. Type locality: Mauritius. 


Bray, D.J. 2019


Australian Faunal Directory

Clouded Saury, Saurida nebulosa Valenciennes 1849


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

Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-eastern Australia. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 437 pp. 

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. 

Russell, B.C. 1999. Families Synodontidae, Bathysauridae. pp. 1928-1947 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 3 pp. 1397-2068. 

Russell, B. & Smith-Vaniz, W.F. 2016. Saurida nebulosa. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T67852930A67871635. Downloaded on 11 December 2018.
Valenciennes, A. in Cuvier, G.L. & Valenciennes, A. 1849. Histoire Naturelle des Poissons. Paris : Levrault Vol. 22 532 pp. pls 634-650. 

Waples, R.S. 1982. A biochemical and morphological review of the lizardfish genus Saurida in Hawaii, with description of a new species. Pacific Science 35(3): 217-235 figs 1-5

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37118027

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:2-60 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:19 cm TL

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