Pogonophryne scotti

Common Name

Scott's Plunderfish

Year Described

Regan, 1914


Dorsal Fin: II-III, 25-26
Anal Fin: 16-18
Pectoral Fin: 19-22
Pelvic Fin: I, 5
Caudal Fin: 8-11 (branched rays)
Gill Rakers: 13-21 (total in first arch)
Branchiostegal rays: 5
Upper Lateral Line Scales: 21-27 (tubular anteriorly, disc-shaped posteriorly)
Middle Lateral Line Scale: 8-14 (disc-shaped anteriorly and tube-shaped posteriorly)
Vertebrae: 35-36

A “scotti group” plunderfish. Body elongate, flattened ventrally, with a large and wide head. Post-temporal ridges well developed, as well as all other head ridges. Eyes large. Snout rounded; length equal to orbit. Interorbital wide (7.1-11.0 in HL). Two dorsal fins: one a very small spiny fin over opercle and the other a long-based fin consisting of rays. Second dorsal quite high in females and very high in males. Anal fin much shorter in height with origin well behind dorsal origin. Pectoral fin large and fan-shaped. Pelvic fin jugular, rounded and fairly long. Caudal fin truncate. Lower jaw extends 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 posterior half of dorsal fin and the other on the lateral midline on the rear body and caudal peduncle. Mental barbel short (5.5-8.0 in HL) with a pointed or rounded tip covered in papillae.


Head pale with no large spots and faint reticulations on the lower half. Body with heavy dark mottling, often with two saddle markings on upper body. Spiny dorsal light or dark. Soft dorsal variable but usually with oblique bands or spot-bands of varying intensity, often paler distally. Males with darkened anterior lobe with lighter spots. Anal fin dark basally, light distally. Pectoral fin heavily marked with 4-13 vertical bands. Pelvic fin pale with 7 dark spot-bands. Caudal fin with up to 5 vertical stripes, with the upper margin darker. Barbel pale with indistinct black pigment.


Maximum size to 31cm TL.


Captured over a wide depth range (110-1,180m). Bottom dwelling.


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

Junior synonyms include P. dolichobranchiata and P. phyllopogon.