Banded Whiptail

Coelorinchus Fasciatus
Banded Whiptail - Marinewise © 2023 MarineWise

Quick Facts

Scientific name Coelorinchus Fasciatus
Other names Striped Whiptail
Size Up to 50 cm (19.68 in)
Weight Up to 1 kg (2.2 lb)


Habitat & AU Distribution Deepsea waters amongst soft bottom areas on the continental slope
Depth Range 500 - 1,500 m (4,921 ft)
Banded Whiptail Distribution

Interesting Info

  • The Banded Whiptail is known to occur off the coasts of Australia, particularly in the southern and southeastern regions. They can be found in the waters of the Great Australian Bight, Tasman Sea, and adjacent oceanic areas.
  • The Banded Whiptail is a species of deep-sea fish with an elongated body and a whip-like tail, from which it gets its name. They have a silver-coloured body with distinctive dark, vertical bands running along their length, giving them a banded appearance. Their eyes are relatively large, adapted for low light conditions in their deep-sea habitat.
  • As a deep-sea predator, they prey on small fish, crustaceans, and squid that inhabit the same depths. Their whip-like tail is thought to be used for prey capture and locomotion.
  • Their large eyes are specially adapted to function in the dimly lit environment of the deep sea. They have a high density of rod cells that allow them to detect even the faintest traces of light.
  • The Banded Whiptail has developed several adaptations to survive in the deep-sea environment, such as bioluminescent organs that help attract prey and potential mates in the dark depths.
  • Although not extensively studied, deep-sea fish species like the Banded Whiptail often produce a large number of small eggs during their reproductive season. This strategy allows them to increase the chances of survival for at least some of their offspring in the harsh and unpredictable deep-sea environment.
  • The spawning season for this species generally occurs during the warmer months, from late spring to early summer.
  • They typically have a lifespan of around 15 to 20 years, though this can vary based on environmental factors and predation risks.
Species Interaction

Elusive Species

Interaction with the Banded Whiptail is minimal to non-existent due to its deep-sea habitat. The fish resides at depths that are inaccessible to most people. Any occurrences of this fish would potential be bycatch from deep-sea trawlers or specific scientific research and deep-sea exploration.

Scientific Classification

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Actinopterygii

Order: Gadiformes

Family: Macrouridae

Genus: Coelorinchus

Species: Coelorinchus Fasciatus

Conservation Status

The conservation status of the Banded Whiptail in Australia was not been independently evaluated or officially listed on the IUCN Red List, but deep-sea fish species like this are vulnerable to various threats, and conservation efforts are advocated to protect their habitats and populations.

Elusive / Overlooked Species

Finding: Difficult

Temperament: Shy

Location: Deepsea

Danger: None

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