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Bluefin gurnard, Chelidonichthys kumu

Bluefin gurnard
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Scorpaeniformes
Family: Triglidae
Genus: Chelidonichthys
Binomial name
Chelidonichthys kumu
(Cuvier, 1829)

The bluefin gurnard, Chelidonichthys kumu, is a searobin of the family Triglidae, found in the western Indian Ocean and the western Pacific Ocean being common around Australia and New Zealand at depths down to 200 m. Its length is up to 60 cm.

The bluefin gurnard has a wedge shaped head and round tapering body. Strong bony plates, and some spines, cover the head and gills. The mouth closes almost out of sight beneath this armour. The first three rays of the pectoral fins are separated and serve a sensory function, and the fan formed by the pectoral fins is spectacular - the upper surface is bright green with a yellow margin and a large black splotch near the hind edge. Scattered white spots surround this black mark.

The body is pink-red or brownish and blends well with the open sand that is the usual habitat. Bluefin gurnards eat shellfish, crustaceans and worms from sandy bottoms, which they expose whilst delving using their bony snout.

They are a tasty food fish.


* "Chelidonichthys kumu". FishBase. Ed. Ranier Froese and Daniel Pauly. FishBase, 2009.
* Tony Ayling & Geoffrey Cox, Collins Guide to the Sea Fishes of New Zealand, (William Collins Publishers Ltd, Auckland, New Zealand 1982) ISBN 0-00-216987-8

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