Australian Biological Resources Study

Australian Faunal Directory


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CAAB: 37287000


Lionfishes, Rockfishes, Scorpionfishes, Scorpionfishes, Stingfishes, Stonefishes, Waspfishes

Compiler and date details

24 April 2015 - Dianne J. Bray, Ursula E. Smith, Gerald R. Allen, Norbert J. Cross & Douglass F. Hoese

Gerald R. Allen, Norbert J. Cross, Dianne J. Bray & Douglass F. Hoese


The family Scorpaenidae comprises three subfamilies: Caracanthinae, Pteroinae and the Scorpaeninae (Shinohara & Imamura, 2005; and Eschmeyer & Fong, 2014). Previously, Ishida (1994) recognised two subfamilies: Pteroinae and the Scorpaeninae, while Nelson (2006) included three subfamilies as tribes of the Scorpaeninae. Scorpionfishes are well represented in all tropical and temperate seas with more than 225 species belonging to about 25 genera. In Australia and external territories, 74 described species and 18 genera are known.

Most species inhabit coral and rocky reefs or deeper offshore waters on the continental shelf. Most species are ambush predators, usually found motionless on the bottom, where they blend well with the surroundings, waiting for passing prey of small fish and invertebrates. The maximum size ranges from about 7 cm to 50 cm standard length.

Shinohara & Imamura (2005) studied Caracanthus. The subfamily Pteroinae is being revised by M. Matsunuma. Johnson & Motomura (2008) treated species found in southern Australia, and many tropical species are treated in Poss (1999) and Allen & Erdmann (2012).


History of changes

Note that this list may be incomplete for dates prior to September 2013.
Published As part of group Action Date Action Type Compiler(s)
06-May-2015 SCORPAENIFORMES 23-Apr-2015 MODIFIED Dr Dianne Bray (NMV) Dr Doug Hoese (AM) Dr Matthew Lockett (AM)
12-Feb-2010 (import)