Dendrochirus brachypterus   (Cuvier,  1829) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Randall, J.E.

Size: Max length 17.0 cm TL (male/unsexed)

Color: Brownish with indistinct dark transverse bands. Spinous dorsal brownish with dark spots on spines. Soft dorsal, anal and caudal light with dark spots. Pectoral with 6 or 7 broad dark transverse bands above, lower sides with dark spots. Ventral with 5 dark transverse bands.

Head 2.5-2.6 in standard length, 3.3-3.4 in total length. Depth of body 2.4-2.5 in standard length, 3.2-3.3 in total length. Eye diameter 3.5-3.6 in head, equal to or a little more than snout and about 0.7 in concave interorbital space. Maxillary reaching to about below hind border of pupil. Villiform teeth in jaws and on vomer. Spination consisting of a short spine between nostrils, supraorbital ridge with 5 or 6 spines, inferior postorbital ridge with several spines, interorbital ridge well developed and connected posteriorly by a transverse ridge and continued to the superior postorbital ridges, suborbital ridge with several small spines, preorbital with 2 or 3 blunt spines, preopercle with 3 spines and a feebly developed flat opercular spine. 5th to 7th dorsal spines longer than others. Pectoral fin slightly longer than head, ventral fin a little shorter. Filaments on snout, above eye and preopercle margin and a flap at anterior nostril.
Number of spines and rays in the dorsal fin: XIII, 10; number of spines and rays in the anal fin: III, 6; number of rays in the pectoral fin: i, 8, 8; number of spines and rays in the ventral fin: I, 5; number of scale rows along the midside of body from the upper corner of operculum to the midbase of caudal fin in the absence of lateral line: 45-48; number of horizontal scale rows usually counted from origin of the dorsal fin to the lateral line and from anal origin to the lateral line: 6+1+12-13.

Dioecious, internal (oviduct) fertilization, nonguarders, open water/substratum egg scatterers. Distinct pairing. Females possess specialized ovarian structures including stalk-like ovigerous lamellae and secretory epithelia.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Pterois brachypterus Cuvier, 1829
Dendrochirus brachyptera Palmer, 1958
Dendrochirus brachypterus Smith, 1949
Pterois brachyptera Cuvier, 1829
(Senior synonym)

Common Name (s)
• Shortfin Lionfish (English)
• Shortfin Turkeyfish (English)
• Fang Hamas (Mahl)
• Chavarali (Malayalam)
• Butterfly Firefish
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial, Dangers

Habitat:  Reef Associated
Trophic Level:  Secondary Consumer
Prey:  Small crustaceans


• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Andaman Islands (Lat: 10) (Long: 93) INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Agatti INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Chettalatt INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Kavaratti INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Minicoy INDIA
• Lakshadweep INDIA
• Red Sea

Literature Source(s)
  • Wafar, MVM (2003) Checklists of reef fauna Available at -
  • Rao, DV; Devi, K and Rajan, PT (2000) An account of ichthyofauna of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Bay of Bengal Occasional paper no 178 Records of the Zoological Survey of India ZSI, Calcutta 1-434 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Devi, K and Rao, DV (2003) Poisonous and venomous fishes of Andaman Islands, Bay of Bengal Occasional paper no 211 Records of The Zoolgical Survey of India ZSI, Calcutta 25934 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Allen, GR and Mohammed, A (2003) Coral Reef Fishes of Indonesia Zoological Studies 42(1) 26299 Available at - Digital Information Resource Center, Pune.
  • Jones, S and Kumaran, M (1980) Fishes of the Laccadive Archipelago The Nature Conservation and Aquatic Sciences Service, Trivandrum, Kerala 760 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at -
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at -

Page last updated on:2011-12-08

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