From 3 to 40 meters.
Cochleoceps orientalis grows to approximately 55 mm long. It has no scales, instead being protected by mucous which covers the body in a thick coating. It has an intense orange to greenish-yellow colouration. The body is scattered with dark red spots that diminish in size and intensity toward the belly. Numerous, short, thin, blue, iridescent lines are present on the back and sides. These lines are generally perpendicular to the length of the body.
The posterior part of the ventral fins appear as a fleshy fringe, with the anterior part merging into the sucking disc. Parts of the disc have dermal papillae which are flat. These probably allow the fish to adhere to surfaces.
Habitat and behaviour
Cochleoceps orientalis normally lives in the demersal zone at depths of 3 to 40 metres. It is most often found on the kelp species ecklonia radiata but can sometimes occur on ascidians and sponges at greater depths.
This species avoids swimming in open waters where it would vulnerable to predators. It instead it remains sucked onto kelp, and when moving, does so in short dashes.
Adults deposit their eggs on kelp, with both males and females remaining at the site. However, only the male guards them.
- "WoRMS - World Register of Marine Species - Cochleoceps orientalis Hutchins, 1991". Marinespecies.org. 2008-01-15. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
- "Eastern Cleaner-Clingfish (Cochleoceps orientalis)". Ozanimals.com. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
- "Cochleoceps orientalis, Eastern cleaner-clingfish". Fishbase.sinica.edu.tw. 2012-07-03. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
- "Eastern Cleaner Clingfish, Cochleoceps orientalis Hutchins, 1991". Australian Museum. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
- "Cochleoceps orientalis, Eastern cleaner-clingfish". Fishbase.org. 2012-07-03. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
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- Hutchins, J.B. 1991. Description of three new species of gobiesocid fishes from southern Australia, with a key to the species of Cochleoceps. Records of the Western Australian Museum. 15(3): 655-672.
- Hutchins, J.B. In Gomon, M.F, J.C.M. Glover & R.H. Kuiter (Eds). 1994. The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. State Print, Adelaide. Pp. 992.
- Hutchins, B. & R. Swainston. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Swainston Publishing. Pp. 180.
- Kuiter, R.H. 1993. Coastal Fishes of South-Eastern Australia. Crawford House Press. Pp. 437.
- Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
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