Murray Hardyhead (Craterocephalus fluviatilis)

Classification: Endangered

Since the 1950s, the range of the Murray Hardyhead - a small schooling species of fish - has experienced substantial decline. Endemic to the Murray and Murrumbidgee river systems in Victoria and South Australia and a few records along the way into NSW, the Murray Hardyhead prefers open, shallow, slow-flowing or still water. Optimal habitat coditions seem to be saline lakes with moderate acitiy and wide-ranging water temperatures. There is also a correlation to habitat with dense aquatic vegetation, providing protection and good food supply.

Habitat fragmentation and rise in water salinity are threats facing the Murray Hardyhead and securing its future.

Photo: NSW Office of Environment & Heritage

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