The spotted handfish, Brachionichthys hirsutus, is a rare Australian fish from the family Brachionichthyidae. It is classified as Critically Endangered (CR - A1cde) on the IUCN Red List
2002. It is a benthic fish usually found in depths of 5 to 10 metres,
with overall sightings varying from a minimum of 2 metres depth up to a
maximum of 30 metres deep. They have been recorded from depths between
2-30 m but appear to be most common in 5-10 m (Bruce et al., 1998).
The spotted handfish is unusual in that it has highly adapted pectoral fins, which appear like hands (hence the name) and allow it to walk on the sea floor.
It has a highly restricted territory, being found only in the estuary of Derwent River, Tasmania, and nearby areas.
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