Pogonophryne macropogon

Common Name

Large-lured Plunderfish

Year Described

Eakin, 1981


Dorsal Fin: II, 27-28
Anal Fin: 17-18
Pectoral Fin: 19-20
Pelvic Fin: I, 5
Caudal Fin: 8-11 (branched rays)
Gill Rakers: 15-18 (total in first arch)
Branchiostegal rays: 5
Upper Lateral Line Scales: 24-27 (tubular anteriorly, disc-shaped posteriorly)
Middle Lateral Line Scale:
Vertebrae: 38-39

A “mentella group” plunderfish. Body elongate, flattened ventrally, with a large and wide head. Post-temporal ridges not developed. Eyes large. Snout smoothly rounded; length equal to orbit. Interorbital wide. Two dorsal fins: one a very small spiny fin over opercle and the other a long-based fin consisting of rays. Second dorsal fin high. Anal fin lower than dorsal with origin well behind dorsal origin. Pectoral fin large and fan-shaped. Pelvic fin jugular, rounded and fairly long. Caudal fin truncate. Lower jaw projects beyond upper. Mouth reaching middle or orbit; protractile. Jaws with small teeth. No teeth on vomer or palate. Upper opercular edge with a pointed, hook-like projection. Body naked. Two lateral lines: one on the upper body ending under the posterior dorsal fin and the other on the lateral midline on the rear body and caudal peduncle. Mental barbel long (1.7-3.3 in HL) with an expanded terminal expansion (65% of barbel length) covered in flattened papillae.


Body and head light gray, covered with numerous dark blotches and spots. Belly pale and unmarked. Spiny dorsal with a dark blotch. Soft dorsal with oblique bands and a flesh-colored margin. Anal fin flesh-colored; slightly darkened basally. Pectoral fin with 9-10 vertical spot-bands and a pale margin. Pelvic fin pale. Caudal fin with 9 vertical spot-bands and a flesh-colored margin. Barbel with mottled stalk and flesh-colored terminal esca.


Maximum size to 34cm TL.


Deep water from 570-836m. Bottom dwelling.


Sub-Antarctic: known from off the S. Shetland Is.


Balushkin, A.V. and R. Eakin. 1998. A new toad plunderfish Pogonophryne fusca sp. nova (Fam. Artedidraconidae: Notothenioidei) with notes on species composition and species groups in the genus Pogonophryne Regan. J. Ichthyol. 38(8):574-579.

Eakin, R.R. 1990. Artedidraconidae. p. 332-356. In O. Gon and P.C. Heemstra (eds.) Fishes of the Southern Ocean. J.L.B. Smith Institute of Ichthyology, Grahamstown, South Africa.

Other Notes

Only known from two specimens.