Uncommon in the Solitary Islands Marine Park. Widespread Indo-Pacific region, Red Sea, Persian Gulf and East Africa to the Hawaiian and Society islands, north to Japan, south to New Zealand. In Australia recorded from Western Australia, across the tropical north to Queensland and south to central New South Wales.
Intertidal to at least 25 m, some captures over 170 m recorded. Frequents offshore reefs and lagoons, colour may correspond to surrounding sponges or other substrate.
Variable colouration makes identification difficult from others in the genus. A black spot on the upper body towards the rear of the dorsal fin and the presence of a caudal peduncle are indicative of this species. Feeds on small fishes which it attracts with a movable illicium or "fishing rod" tipped with an esca or "lure". Grows to 13 cm.
FishBase. Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2018. World Wide Web electronic publication. http://www.fishbase.org/summary/Antennatus-nummifer.html. Accessed 17/04/18.
John E. Randall, Gerald R. Allen, Roger C. Steene, Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea, 2nd Edition, 1997. Published by Crawford House Publishing Pty Ltd. p.54.