Tasmanian Rudderfish, Tubbia tasmanica Whitley 1943

Other Names: Mauve Ruffe, Tasmanian Ruffe

Tasmanian Rudderfish, Tubbia tasmanica. Source: Australian National Fish Collection, CSIRO. License: All rights reserved

A dull uniform brownish rudderfish with no distinctive markings, darker chocolate-brown dorsal and anal fins, and a slightly paler snout and gill cover. Juveniles have spots on the sides.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2018, Tubbia tasmanica in Fishes of Australia, accessed 02 Dec 2022, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/499

Tasmanian Rudderfish, Tubbia tasmanica Whitley 1943

More Info


Eastern Tasmania and the Cascade Plateau, to off southwestern Tasmania and possibly north to off Portland, Victoria. Elsewhere the species occurs in New Zealand and off Saint Paul Island. Adults of this relatively rare species occur near the bottom in deep waters, while subadults are found near the surface over deep water, and juveniles occur inshore, usually above 50 m.


Dorsal fin 47-51; Anal fin 33-37; Caudal fin 17; Pectoral fin 18- 21; Pelvic fin I, 5; lateral line scales (approx 120); Gill rakers 6-7 + 1 + 12-14; Vertebrae 43-45.
Body a compressed elongate oval of moderate depth (32-44% SL); caudal peduncle short and compressed. Head small (22-36% SL), compressed; snout bluntly rounded, slightly overhanging mouth; eyes of moderate size (20-22% HL); mouth of moderate size, maxillae reaching well below eyes, slightly receding; teeth fine, single row in each jaw.  Pyloric caeca numerous, simple and finger like. 
Scales very small and easily dislodged; lateral line more or less following profile of back. Numerous small pores on head, especially on snout and around eyes and mouth; broad well defined band of pores along trunk adjacent to dorsal and anal fins.
Single elongate, very low, fleshy dorsal fin with short soft spines grading into branched rays, origin above pectoral fin bases, outer margin parallel to that of trunk; anal fin low, fleshy, rather elongate, margin slightly convex; caudal fin moderately forked, tips pointed. Pectoral fins small, paddle-shaped. Pelvic fins thoracic, very small, almost vestigial.


Dull uniform brownish without distinctive markings; dorsal and anal fins darker, chocolate brown; snout and gill covers slightly paler.


The species is named for the type locality, Tasmania.

Species Citation

Tubbia tasmanica Whitley 1943, Aust. Zool. 10(2): 179. Type locality: Tasmania.


Bray, D.J. 2018


Australian Faunal Directory

Tasmanian Rudderfish, Tubbia tasmanica Whitley 1943


Gomon, M.F. 2008. Families Sphyraenidae to Centrolophidae. pp. 774-800 in Gomon, M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp. 

Haedrich, R.L. 1967. The stromateoid fishes; systematics and a classification. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard 135(2): 31-139 figs 1-56 (in part as Schedophilus huttoni)

Last, P.R., Daley, R.K. & Duhamel, G. 2013. A review of the rudderfish genus Tubbia (Stromateoidei: Centrolophidae) with the description of a new species from the Southern Hemisphere. Zootaxa 3616(5): 461–477 

Last, P.R., Scott, E.O.G. & Talbot, F.H. 1983. Fishes of Tasmania. Hobart : Tasmanian Fisheries Development Authority 563 pp. figs. 

May, J.L. & Maxwell, J.G.H. 1986. Field Guide to Trawl Fish from Temperate Waters of Australia. Hobart : CSIRO Division of Marine Research 492 pp.

McDowall, R.M. 1979. The centrolophid genus Tubbia :(Pisces : Stromateoidei). Copeia 1979(4): 733-738 figs 1-4 

McDowall, R.M. 1982. The centrolophid fishes of New Zealand (Pisces : Stromateoidei). Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand 12(2): 103-142 figs 1-20 

McDowall, R.M. 1994. Family Centrolophidae. pp. 832-838, figs 736-741 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. 

Parin, N.V. & Piotrovsky, A.S. 2004. Stromateoid fishes (suborder Stromateoidei) of the Indian Ocean (species composition, distribution, biology, and fisheries). Journal of Ichthyology 44(Suppl. 1): 33-62 

Stewart, A.L., Last, P.R. & Struthers, C.D. 2015. 235 Family Centrolophidae, pp. 1648-1661 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.

Whitley, G.P. 1943. Ichthyological notes and illustrations. Part 2. The Australian Zoologist 10(2): 167-187 figs 1-10 See ref at BHL

Yearsley, G.K., Last, P.R. & Ward, R.D. (eds) 1999. Australian Seafood Handbook. Hobart : CSIRO Marine Research 460 pp.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37445002

Depth: 52–1400 m

Habitat:Epipelagic, mesopelagic

Max Size:67 cm TL

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