Soleichthys microcephalus (Günther, 1862)
Smallhead sole
Soleichthys microcephalus
photo by Graham, K.

Family:  Soleidae (Soles)
Max. size:  22 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  demersal; depth range 3 - 43 m
Distribution:  Southwest Pacific: warm-temperate New South Wales, Australia.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal soft rays (total): 71-84; Anal soft rays: 61-71; Vertebrae: 43-45. This species is distinguished from its congeners by the following characters: vertebrae 43-45; dorsal-fin rays 71-84; anal-fin rays 61-71; lateral-line scales 81-89; ocular-side pigmentation pattern consists of 8-10 dark-brown to black, mostly complete crossbands on the body, with these bands noticeably wider than the alternating lighter-colored crossbands; 3 dark brown crossbands continuous across head; 2 conspicuous white spots in longitudinal series on the ocular-side midline; 2 elongated ocular-side pectoral-fin rays of nearly equal length or with the second fin ray longer than first; small scales on bases and proximal halves of elongated ocular-side pectoral-fin rays (Ref. 76812).
Biology:  Found in estuaries and harbors, usually buried in muddy substrate (Ref. 9002). Move with undulating body when disturbed, reminiscent of distasteful flatworm, thus possibly deterring predators (Ref. 9002).
IUCN Red List Status: Not Evaluated (N.E.) Ref. (120744)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   

Entered by: Luna, Susan M. - 04.05.99
Modified by: Capuli, Estelita Emily - 06.06.17

Source and more info: For personal, classroom, and other internal use only. Not for publication.

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