Animal Species:Cottonmouth Trevally, Uraspis secunda Poey, 1860
Fishes of the genus Uraspis can be distinguished by the brilliant white tongue and walls of the mouth.
Basset-hull's Trevally, Cottonmouth Jack
Fishes of the genus Uraspis can be distinguished from the other Australian species in the family Carangidae by the brilliant white tongue and inside walls of the mouth.
Two species are known from Australian waters, U.secunda and U.uraspis, the Whitemouth Trevally. They can be separated by the extent of the scaleless area on the breast (extends approximately half way to pectoral fin base vs. all the way to the pectoral fin base) and the shape (and scale count) of the curved part of the lateral line (curved lateral line (48-66 scales) usually shorter than straight portion vs. curved (61-82 scales) usually longer than straight). Juveniles of both species are usually banded.
The Cottonmouth Trevally grows to 44 cm in length.
It occurs worldwide in tropical and warm temperate marine waters. In Australia it is known from the central coast of Western Australia, around the tropical north and south to the southern coast of New South Wales.
The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.
Distribution by collection data
- Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 292. (for Uraspis uraspis)
- Gunn, J.S. 1990. A Revision of Selected Genera of the Family Carangidae (Pisces) from Australian Waters. Records of the Australian Museum. Supplement 12: 1-77.
- Hutchins, B. & R. Swainston. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Swainston Publishing. Pp. 180 (for Uraspis uraspis).
- Smith-Vaniz, W.F. in Carpenter, K.E. & V.H. Niem. 1999. The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. Volume 4. Bony fishes part 2 (Mugilidae to Carangidae). FAO. Rome Pp. iii-v, 2069-2790.
Mark McGrouther , Collection Manager, Ichthyology