Bearded Velvetfish

Paraploactis Intonsa
Bearded Velvetfish - Marinewise © 2023 MarineWise

Quick Facts

Scientific name Paraploactis Intonsa
Family Velvetfish / Aploactinidae
Size Up to 16 cm (6.29 in)
Weight Under .15 kg (.33 lb)


Habitat & AU Distribution Coastal waters amongst sandy & silty areas often near reefs
Depth Range 5 - 30 m (98 ft)
Bearded Velvetfish Distribution

Interesting Info

  • Bearded Velvetfish are a species of reef fish found along the coast of Western Australia. They are typically found in the shallow reef waters from Perth up to Shark Bay.
  • Masterfully camouflaged with varying colours, they can adapt their body colour to match their environment. They generally display the following types of colour combinations, grey with dark mottling, purplish-brown with pink/orange blotches or orange with grey patches, and pink under the eye.
  • Their name is derived from the small beard or hairy whiskers found on their chin.
  • Bearded Velvetfish are carnivores, feeding on smaller fish and crustaceans.
  • Residing within algae-rich sections of the reef, they primarily lead a nocturnal lifestyle.
  • Due to their small size and elusive nature, there is limited information on their breeding behaviours and lifespan.
Species Interaction

Snorkeling & Diving, Elusive Species

The Bearded Velvetfish is a very elusive and difficult species to find. They prefer algae rich areas of rocky reefs and silt, which provide ample hiding spots. Their small size and camouflage will require a keen eye to spot.

Scientific Classification

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Actinopterygii

Order: Scorpaeniformes

Family: Aploactinidae

Genus: Paraploactis

Species: Paraploactis Intonsa

Conservation Status

The conservation status of the Bearded Velvetfish is not well-documented, but it is generally not considered a species of concern. Further research might be needed to determine its exact status.

Recreational Viewing
- Snorkeling & Scuba

Finding: Difficult

Temperament: Shy

Location: Inner Reef, Lagoon

Danger: Dorsal & Pectoral Spine

Elusive / Overlooked Species

Finding: Difficult

Temperament: Shy

Location: Inner reef

Danger: Dorsal and Pectoral Spine

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