Image: Little Bellowsfish, Macroramphosus gracilis

Little Bellowsfish, Macroramphosus gracilis

A 44 mm SL Little Bellowsfish found alive on Shelly Beach, Ballina, New South Wales, December 2010.  The fish was returned to the water, but it did not recover, so it was retained.  Thank you to Philip for delivering the specimen to the Australian Museum.  It is now registered in the Ichthyology Collection (AMS I.45730-001).

Philip Manieri
© Philip Manieri


Two species of Macroramphosus are known from Australian waters. They can be separated by colouration (M. scolopax the Common Bellowsfish is red-orange vs M. gracilis, which is grey to blue), length of the dorsal fin spine (that of M. scolopax is longer) and body depth (M. gracilis is more slender).


  1. Clarke, T.A. 1984.  Diet and morphological variation in snipefishes, presently recognised as Macrorhamphosus scolopax, from southeast Australia: evidence for two sexually dimorphic species. Copeia. 3: 595-608.
  2. Hoese, D.F., Bray, D.J., Paxton, J.R. & G.R. Allen. 2006. Fishes. In Beesley, P.L. & A. Wells. (eds) Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Volume 35. ABRS & CSIRO Publishing: Australia. parts 1-3, pages 1-2178.


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Tags fishes, ichthyology, Macroramphosidae, Little Bellowsfish,