Latin name

Schindleria brevipinguis

Other names

Schindleria brevipinguis


The appearance of this species is pedomorphic - adults resemble juveniles. This applies not only to the very small body size, but also to the details of the appearance. Schindleria brevipinguis has atrophied fins and lacks scales. The estimated life span of individuals of this species is only two months. Despite its very low weight, Schindleria brevipinguis differs from other species of the genus in having a more "dense" physique, as indicated by both its Latin species name (from the roots brevis - short - and pinguis - thick, massive) and its English name "stout infantfish". Vertebrae: 35-36. Body depth at the beginning of the pectoral fin is 9-12% of the standard length, and at the beginning of the anal fin is 9-14% of the average. The premaxillary and dento-mandibular muscles are not toothed. Males have a flexible rod-like urogenital papilla without lobes, protuberances or additional papillae, the distal half of which tapers towards the blunt end and usually points forward.

Features of fish fins

Dorsal soft rays (total): 13. Anal soft rays: 10-11.

Fish colouring

There is no pigmentation (the only coloured part of the body are the eyes).


Schindleria brevipinguis is known from two isolated sites in the Great Barrier Reef area. The first is between Lizard Island and Carter's Reef and the second is near Osprey Reef in the Coral Sea, off the northern tip of the Great Barrier Reef. 


Subtropical marine species. They live in the euphotic zone at depths of 15 to 30 metres in close proximity to coral reefs.


It is the smallest vertebrate. The average body length of a male is only 7.9 mm, that of a female with eggs 8.4 mm. The body weight is 1 mg.


The population of these fish is quite dense: seven individuals per cubic metre.

Food and feeding habits

Prefers to feed on plankton.


Adults with mature gonads, retaining postlarval characteristics. Multiple mating. Becomes sexually mature two or three weeks after birth. 


It is very small and of no interest to fishermen.

Relationship with a person

A species harmless to humans.

Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Squad Gobiiformes
Family Gobiidae
Genus Schindleria
Species S. brevipinguis
Conservation status Least Concern
Habitat Pelagic
Life span, years 0,17
Maximum body weight, kg 0,000001
Maximum length, cm 0,84
Sailing speed, m/s No information
Threat to people Not edible
Way of eating Planktonophage

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Stout infantfish

Tags: stout infantfish