Inhabits mainly clear streams, often deeply shaded and relatively fast-flowing, although it sometimes occurs in lakes, particularly in Tasmania. In New Zealand and parts of Tasmania, juveniles occur in marine waters, presumably the larvae are washed out to the sea. The existence of a marine stage is regarded to be facultative rather than obligatory in Australia. Swims near the bottom, usually around the cover of rocks and logs. More common in uploads (Snowy Mountains, Otway Ranges, central Tasmania) than at lower elevations (Ref. 44894).