Tag Archive: surgeonfishes. tangs


TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Acanthuridae (Surgeonfishes, tangs, unicornfishes)

Genus/species: Acanthurus triostegus

Convict surgeonfish 8156826256_a90f659c94_o

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: The Convict Tang is a very common surgeonfish.  It is oval in profile and laterally compressed, gray with 4 vertical stripes (1 stripe on head across the yellow eye; 1 on caudal peduncle). The erectile spine on each side of caudal peduncle which folds down into a groove.  This scalpel like spine causes a nasty cut if the fish is treated roughly by a predator or a human. 

Common length : 17.0 cm (6.7 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT:  A. triostegus is found in lagoons and seaward reefs in areas of hard substrates from sea level to 90 m (300 feet) in the Indo-Pacific.

Typically occurs in shallows to 5 m (16 feet).

DIET IN THE WILD: It is a herbivore which uses its serrated teeth along creating saw-like motion to remove filamentous algae from the substrate.

ConvictTang8358632069_43f1bc0004_k

REPRODUCTION: The Convict Tang spawns at dusk with females broadcasting eggs into open water where the males fertilize them.  Larvae drift ~75 days. Post-larvae settle in intertidal areas of benches and reef flats.

PREDATORS: Eggs and sperm are preyed upon by eagle rays, which are often present during spawning.

CONSERVATION: IUCN, Least concern.

REMARKS: This black-barred fish’s common name presumably alludes to the coloration of many prison uniforms of the previous century.

 

References

Ron’s Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3185789781/in/set-72157608332652056/

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Philippine Coral Reef 2016

fishbase  www.fishbase.org/summary/1260

Aquarium of the Pacific www.aquariumofpacific.org/onlinelearningcenter/species/co…

Monterey Bay Aquarium www.montereybayaquarium.org/animals/AnimalDetails.aspx?en…

EOL eol.org/pages/203984/overview

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-lR

 

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Acanthuridae (Surgeonfishes, tangs, unicornfishes)

Genus/species: Acanthurus achilles

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: The Achilles Surgeonfish’s black body is ovate and compressed with a large orange caudal spot. The caudal fin has a broad vertical orange band. The spine in caudal peduncle may be venomous. Juveniles lack the orange spot.

Length to 24 cm (9.5 in)

Acanthurus achilles (Acanthuridae) Surgeonfishes, Tangs and Unicornfishes Distribution: Indo-Pacific. Habitat: Clear seaward reefs, primarily in the surf zone to 4 m. Usually in small groups. Appearance: Length to 24 cm. Ovate compressed body black with a large orange caudal spot. Caudal fin has a broad vertical orange band. Diet: Diurnal herbivores of filamentous and small fleshy algae. Reproduction and Development: Spawners. Juveniles lack the orange spot. Mortality/Longevity: An important food fish on tropical islands. Remarks: Highly territorial. “Tang” in British dialect means dagger or knife. Thus the common name refers to the caudal peduncle spines. Single scalpel-like peduncular spine folds into a groove on each side of the tail. Spines are used offensively or defensively, against conspecifics in struggles for dominance or against predators. Whether a fish has a common name of “surgeonfish” or “tang” seems to be a matter of convention, not substance.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Central Pacific: Micronesia, New Caledonia, Hawaii to Pitcairn and east to of French Polynesia Island. Found on clear seaward reefs, primarily in the surf zone to 4 m (12 ft). Usually in small groups.

DIET IN THE WILD: Diurnal herbivores of filamentous and small fleshy algae.

REPRODUCTION: Monogamous spawners

ACHILLES SURGEONFISH (Acanthurus achilles) .JPG

MORTALITY: An important food fish on tropical islands.

REMARKS: “Tang” in British dialect means dagger or knife. Thus the common name refers to the caudal peduncle spines. Single scalpel-like peduncular spine folds into a groove on each side of the tail. Spines are used offensively or defensively, against conspecifics in struggles for dominance or against predators. Whether a fish has a common name of “surgeonfish” or “tang” seems to be a matter of convention, not substance. The generic name comes from the Greek acantha (“thorn”) and oura (“tail”).

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Philippine Coral Reef 2016

fishbase  www.fishbase.org/summary/Acanthurus-achilles.html

IUCN Red List www.iucnredlist.org/details/177960/0

EOL eol.org/pages/210872/details

Ron’s flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/4330628500/in/set-72157625992053826/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1ah

 

 

 

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