Oyster Blenny, Omobranchus anolius (Valenciennes 1836)


Other Names: Crested Blenny

An female Oyster Blenny, Omobranchus anolius, in Rose Bay, Sydney Harbour, New South Wales, March 2016. Source: Sylke Rohrlach / Flickr. License: CC by Attribution-ShareAlike

Summary:
A comb-tooth blenny often found in mussel and oyster beds. Males have a prominent fleshy crest on the head, and long filamentous dorsal-fin rays. Oyster Blennies are usually olive green, with black spots and fine bluish or blackish lines along sides, and fine pale wavy lines on head.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Omobranchus anolius in Fishes of Australia, accessed 22 Oct 2020, http://136.154.202.208/home/species/4742

Oyster Blenny, Omobranchus anolius (Valenciennes 1836)

More Info


Distribution

Widespread in shallow tropical and temperate waters of eastern and south-eastern Australia, from the Cape York (Queensland) to Spencer Gulf (South Australia); relatively recently recorded in New Zealand. Found in shallow bays and estuaries, especially among oyster and mussel beds in 0-10 m.

Features

Dorsal fin XI-XIII, 17-19; Anal fin II, 19-20; Caudal fin 12-13; Pectoral fin 13;
Pelvic fin I, 2

Body long, slender, compressed, snout steep, mouth small, eyes near top of head. Tentacles absent from nostrils and above eye. Dorsal fin long-based, pelvic fins reduced to a hidden spine and two long, slender rays. Males with a prominent fleshy crest on the head, and long filamentous dorsal-fin rays.

Size

To 9 cm.

Colour

Usually olive green, with black spots and fine bluish or blackish lines along sides, and fine whitish wavy lines on head.

Feeding


Biology

Like all blennies, the sexes are separate and females lay demersal, adhesive eggs.  Females deposit 200–500 eggs in batches, commonly on the inside of oyster shells (Francis et al. 2004). They also spawn withn mussel shells and calcareous worm tubes. The eggs are guarded by the male until the larvae hatch. The larvae have a planktonic phase.

Oyster blennies live in association with oyster shells, mussel shells and calcareous polychaete worm tubes, usually in the intertidal region of bays and estuaries. Females lay their eggs in empty oyster or mussel shells.

Fisheries

Of no interest to fisheries.

Conservation

  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Least Concern
  • Species Citation

    Blennechis anolius Valenciennes, in Cuvier  & Valenciennes 1836, Histoire Naturelle des Poissons Vol. 11: 288. Type locality: Port Jackson, New South Wales.

    Author

    Bray, D.J. 2020

    Resources

    Atlas of Living Australia

    Oyster Blenny, Omobranchus anolius (Valenciennes 1836)

    References


    Castelnau, F.L. de 1879. Essay on the ichthyology of Port Jackson. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 1 3(4): 347-402 (as Blennius unicornis)

    Chao, N.L., McEachran, J., Patzner, R.A. & Williams, J. 2010. Omobranchus anolius. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.1. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 3 March 2012.

    De Vis, C.W. 1884. On new fish from Moreton Bay. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Queensland 1(3): 144-147 (as Salarias galeatus)

    Francis, M.P., Smith, P.J., Walsch, C., & Gomon, M.F. 2004. First records of the Australian blenny, Omobranchus anolius, from New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 38: 671-679.

    Gomon, M.F., Glover, C.J.M. & Kuiter, R.H. 1994. The fishes of Australia's south coast. State Print, Adelaide, Australia.

    Gray, C.A. & Miskiewicz, A.G. 2000. Larval fish assemblages in south-east Australian coastal waters: seasonal and spatial structure. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 50: 549–570. 

    Gray, C.A., Otway, N.M., Laurenson, E.A., Miskiewicz, A.G. & Pethebridge, R.L. 1992. Distribution and abundance of marine fish larvae in relation to effluent plumes from sewage outfalls and depth of water. Marine Biology 113: 549–559. 

    Günther, A. 1861. Catalogue of the Fishes in the British Museum. Catalogue of the acanthopterygian fishes in the collection of the British Museum. London : British Museum Vol. 3 586 pp. (as Petroscirtes anolis)

    Jenkins, G.P. 1986. Composition, seasonality and distribution of ichthyoplankton in Port Phillip Bay, Victoria. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 37: 507–520. 

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

    Macleay, W.J. 1881. Descriptive catalogue of the fishes of Australia. Part 3. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 1 6(1): 1-138 pls 1-2  (as Petroscirtes cristiceps and Petroscirtes guttatus)

    Macleay, W.J. 1884. Notices of new fishes. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 1 9(1): 170-172 (as Petroscirtes wilsoni)

    Marshall, T.C. 1964. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coastal Waters of Queensland. Sydney : Angus & Robertson 566 pp. 136 pls.

    McCulloch, A.R. 1917. Ichthyological notes. Australian Zoologist 1: 89-93.

    Neira, F.J., Miskiewicz, A.G. & Trnski, T. 1998. Larvae of temperate Australian fishes: laboratory guide for larval fish identification. University of Western Australia Press.

    Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 507 pp. figs. 

    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. 

    Smith-Vaniz, W.F. 2008. Family Blenniidae. pp. 693-696 in Gomon, M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp. 

    Springer, V.G. 1972. Synopsis of the tribe Omobranchini with descriptions of three new genera and two new species (Pisces : Blenniidae). Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 130: 1-31 figs 1-16

    Springer, V.G. & Gomon, M.F. 1975. Revision of the blenniid fish genus Omobranchus with descriptions of three new species and notes on other species of the tribe Omobranchini. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 177: 135.

    Steindachner, F. 1863. Ichthyologische Mittheilungen (VI). Verhandlungen der Zoologisch-Botanischen Gesellschaft in Wien 13: 1189-1192 fig. (as Petroscirtes altivelis)

    Stewart, A.L., Struthers, C.D. & Barker, J.J. 2015. 217 Family Blenniidae.  pp. 1528-1538, in Roberts, C.D., Stewart, A.L. & Struthers, C.D. (eds). The Fishes of New Zealand. Wellington : Te Papa Press Vol. 4 pp. 1153-1748.

    Thomson, J.M. & Bennett, A.E. 1953. The oyster blenny, Omobranchus anolius (Valenciennes) (Blenniidae). Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 4: 227-233. 

    Valenciennes, A. in Cuvier, G.L. & Valenciennes, A. 1836. Histoire Naturelle des Poissons. Paris : Levrault Vol. 11 506 pp. pls 307-343. See ref at BHL

    Whitley, G.P. 1964. A survey of Australian Ichthyology. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 89(1): 11-127 (as Cyneichthys anolius)

    Quick Facts


    CAAB Code:37408058

    Depth:0-10 m

    Habitat:Intertidal in mussel & oyster shells

    Max Size:9 cm TL

    Native:Endemic

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