Inimicus didactylus   (Pallas,  1769) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Fisheries Research Institute, Taiwan

Size: 173 mm.

Color: In preserved specimens variegated lighter and darker brown, in young specimens indications of balckish cross bands on tail. Head more or less whitish. Spinous dorsal whitish, with a dusky blotch on the membrane between the second and third spines. Soft dorsal white with a broad, dark, terminal border. Anal light with a darker patch on each of the spines and rays. Pectorals whitish, their base, a broad median transverse band, and a broad terminal band brown or crimson. Ventrals whitish at base, brown or dark red in their distal part. Caudal white, with a basal and a subterminal dark band, these bands often broken into rows of lines or irregular spots.

Height 3.4-3.7, 4.3-4.6 in length with caudal. Head 2.9-3.3, 3.6-4.3 in length with caudal. eye 6.4-7.4, 3.2-4 in snout which is 1.3-1.4 times the length of the postorbital part of the head. Mouth almost vertical. Pointed, somewhat curved teeth in about 6 rows in the jaws and in two patches on vomer. Nostrils much nearer end of snout than eye, the anterior one with a short tube, the posterior one with an elevated rim. Two bony ridges bordering the pedicels of the premaxillaries, united into a median ridge between posterior nostrils, bifurcating again before eyes and running upwards to the bony sockets of the eyes. A deep pit in anterior half of interorbital space, borderd behind by a transverse bony plate which is bent backwards in its median part. Preorbital with two spines, directed downwards, first suborbital with a small spine, last suborbital, forming the preopercular stay, with a spine in its upper posterior part, from which a ridge runs obliquely downwards and forwards, increasing meanwhile in height and forming a loop which in young ones is spine-like. Preopercle with 3 spines, the largest reaching on opercle, with one in front and one behind it. Opercle with a median ridge and a strong spine superiorly. Sides and upper part of head covered by numerous arborescent papillae. Two branched, fleshy tentacles on chin, one behind each maxillary and oftern smaller ones on the spines of the head. Two flattened spines on the superior postorbital ridges and three similar spines on the inferior postorbital ridges. Area behind eyes a smooth bony plate. Origin of dorsal between the first spines of superior postorbital ridge, the base of the three anterior dorsal spines close together, their connecting membranes deeply incised but more developed than that between the third and fourth spines, and that between the following spines, which are free for their greater part. First and third dorsal spines subequal, shorter than second one which is about as long as snout and eye together, and subequal to the fourth to fourteenth spines, the two last spines shorter and much shorter than the anterior rays of the rounded soft dorsal, which are as long as the longest spines. Last dorsal rays attached by membrane to the short caudal peduncle and the base of the caudal. Anal much less deep the soft dorsal, its spines somewhat more than eye, its longest rays shorter than snout, its last ray connected by membranes to caudal peduncle. The two free pectoral rays connected by membrane at their base, they are subequal and as long as snout or as snout and eye. Pectoral rounded, longer than head. Ventrals horizontal, adnate to the skin of the belly, the fifth and longest ray almost as long as the head. Caudal slightly rounded. Skin of back, sides and most of the fins with arborescent papillae, a series of 14-15 along the lateral line.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportion.

Synonym (s)
Scorpaena didactyla Pallas, 1769
Synanceja didactyla Bloch & Schneider, 1801
Pelor maculatum Cuvier and Valenciennes, 1829
Pelor maculatum Lesson, 1830
Pelor maculatum Gunther, 1860
Pelor obscurus Kner, 1867
Pelor didactylum Bleeker, 1879
Pelor didactylum Day, 1875
Inimicus maculatus Jordan and Seale, 1906
Pelor didactylum M. Weber, 1913
Pelor didactylum Fowler, 1928
Inimicus didactylus Matsubara, 1943
Inimicus didactylus Herre, 1934

Common Name (s)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial, Dangers
The venom of this fish can be deadly to man. Its ability to camouflage itself by living half-buried presents a real danger.)

Habitat:  Reef Associated, Estuarine
Trophic Level:  Secondary Consumer
Prey:  Small fishes and crustaceans


• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Andamans INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Beaufort, LF and Briggs, JC (1962) The fishes of the Indo-Australian Archipelago Pataudi House, Daryaganj, New Delhi 11 481 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at -

Page last updated on:2010-04-08

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