Old Wife

An Old Wife swimming upward

What does it look like? Old Wife adults are predominantly silver with 6 to 8 bold black zebra-like stripes, and two elongated sections of dorsal fin. Young are blotched darker, and have a white edged spot on a single dorsal fin.

Where does it live? Common in coastal and deeper waters of southern Australia, from southern Qld in east to around Geraldton WA in west.

What are it’s habitat and habits? The Old Wife, or Bastard Dory, is found in still or slow moving waters of bays and protected areas of offshore reefs, where it feeds individually, in pairs or in shoals on plankton and small crustaceans. Young tend to occupy patches of weed on reefs or within estuaries. Dorsal fins of adults have venomous spines which can inflict a painful sting if handled incorrectly.

Scientific Name: Enoplosus armatus

Size: TL 25cm