Banded bellowsfish

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Banded bellowsfish
Centriscops humerosus (Banded Bellowsfish).gif
Drawing by Dr Tony Ayling
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Syngnathiformes
Family: Macroramphosidae
Genus: Centriscops
T. N. Gill, 1862
C. humerosus
Binomial name
Centriscops humerosus
  • Centriscus humerosus Richardson, 1846
  • Centriscops obliquus Waite, 1911

The banded bellowsfish (Centriscops humerosus), banded yellowfish, banded snipefish, or bluebanded bellowsfish, is a species of fish of the family Macroramphosidae, found in southern oceans at depths of 35 to 1,000 m (115 to 3,281 ft). Its length is up to 30 cm (12 in).


The banded bellowsfish has a very deep, nearly round, highly compressed body which has a depth which is equivalent to 38–62% of its standard length with upper and lower body profiles which are asymmetrical as the nape of small specimens has an angular hump which become smore angular and obvious as the fish grows into an adult. It has a long, tube-like snout, tubular which is between a quarter and a third of the standard length. The spines of the dorsal fin are set into another hump on the posterior part of the fish's back, the second dorsal fin is large, equivalent to just under a half of the standard length. The pelvic fins are rather small. There are four well-developed bony plates located along the shoulder region, while the scales are modified into a coarse, teethlike form covering most of the body. They are predominantly whitish in colour with as many as five oblique orange bands with dark margins although these bands are just orange in the largest adults. The distal parts of the dorsal, anal and caudal fins have a dusky to orange colour. The juveniles are bluish grey and have transparent fins and no bands. The juveniles look so different from the adults that they were thought to be a different species.[3]


The banded bellowsfish has a discontinuous, circumpolar distribution in the temperate waters of the southern hemisphere. In the south eastern Atlantic it is found in South Africa from ]]Cape Columbine to False Bay and it has also been recorded in waters around Tristan da Cunha and Gough Island. In the south western Atlantic it is found off southern Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina and in the south west Pacific in the coastal waters of Australia and New Zealand. In the soutrhern Indian Ocean it has been reported from St. Paul and Amsterdam Islands.[2][1]

Habitat and biology[edit]

The banded bellowsfish is a bathydemersal species of the continental shelf and the continental slope,[1] at depths of 350–1,000 metres (1,150–3,280 ft), although this depth range is restricted to between 300 metres (980 ft) and 700 metres (2,300 ft) off Australia.[3]. Unlike the seashorses and pipiefishes this species lays eggs which develop and hatch outside the body, i.e. it is oviparous. It is carnivorous,[3] preying on epibenthic invertebrates. Off Tasmania it was found to prey mainly on benthic crustaceans and brittle stars, with the brittle stars making up most if the fish's diet, but it was also found to eat Hector's lanternfish (Lampanyctodes hectoris). It has been recorded in the stomach contents of New Zealand smooth skates (Dipterus innominatus) sampled along the Chatham Rise.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Cameron, C. & Pollom, R. (2016). "Centriscops humerosus". The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2016: e.T65349869A67619023. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-1.RLTS.T65349869A67619023.en.
  2. ^ a b Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2018). "Centriscopus humerosus" in FishBase. February 2018 version.
  3. ^ a b c Dianne J. Bray; Vanessa J. Thompson. "Centriscops humerosus". Fishes of Australia. Museums Victoria. Retrieved 12 Jun 2018.