Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Scorpaeniformes
Family: Tetrarogidae
Genus: Notesthes
Species: N. robusta
Binomial name
Notesthes robusta
(Günther, 1860)

The Bullrout, Notesthes robusta[1][2], also commonly called "Freshwater Stonefish" or "Kroki", is a pale yellowish to dark-brown coloured fish that lives in tidal estuaries and slow-flowing streams in eastern Australia, from Southern New South Wales, up to northern Queensland, Australia[3]. It has on a very infrequent occurrence been caught at sea. Its spines are poisonous. It is the only member of the genus Notesthes.


Bullrout has s large head, seven spines on the operculum. It has a big mouth with a protruding lower jaw. The spinous dorsal fin is slightly concave posteriorly and the last soft dorsal ray is attached by a membrane to the caudal peduncle. The body is covered with small scales but the head is scaleless. Its colouration is variable from pale yellowish to dark brown, with blotches and marbling of dark brown, red-brown, grey or black. These markings sometimes form broad irregular bands. It is believed that Bullrout grow up to 30 cm in size, but are more commonly found at the 20 cm size.

Danger to humans and first aid

The dorsal, anal and pelvic spines on a bullrout have venom glands on them, and should be handled with extreme care [4]. A puncture wound from one of these spines can be excruciatingly painful. For immediate relief of pain associated with the sting of a bullrout, immerse the affected area in hot water.