StonefishSynanceia verrucosa

  • Mangroves & Estuaries
  • Fish
  • Stonefish
  • Venomous


Synanceia verrucosa is a carnivorous ray-finned fish, known for its venomous spines and its camouflage abilities. With colours varying between brown and grey, it may have patches of yellow, orange or red and may look like an encrusted rock or lump of coral.  Adults can measure between 30 to 40 centimeters, although larger specimens have been recorded.[1]


[1] Fishbase. n.d. Synanceia verrucosa Bloch & Schneider, 1801. Accessed April 2018.

Habitat and ecology

S. verrucosa inhabits shallow tropical marine waters of the Indo-Pacific and is closely associated with coral reef systems and shallow tropical marine waters. S. verrucosa individuals are comfortable on rubble or coral bottoms. They can also be found under rocks or ledges and are known to be able to bury themselves in sand using their large pectoral fins.


Conservation status, management and threats

Stonefish are not actually directly threatened by human activity. Their status is not yet established in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Habitat destruction and degradation of coral reef ecosystems due to climate change may lead to local populations being affected. 

Did you know?

The stonefish is the most venomous fish in the world.