Acanthurus triostegus  (Linnaeus, 1758)

Convict surgeonfish
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Acanthurus triostegus   AquaMaps   Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Image of Acanthurus triostegus (Convict surgeonfish)
Acanthurus triostegus
Picture by Randall, J.E.

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes (Perch-likes) > Acanthuridae (Surgeonfishes, tangs, unicornfishes) > Acanthurinae
Etymology: Acanthurus: Greek, akantha = thorn + Greek, oura = tail (Ref. 45335).

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Marine; reef-associated; depth range 0 - 90 m (Ref. 9710), usually 0 - 90 m (Ref. 27115).   Tropical; 24°C - 26°C (Ref. 27115); 26°N - 36°S, 25°E - 85°W (Ref. 57245)

Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm 7.5  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 27.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 3145); common length : 17.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9267)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 22-26; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 19 - 22. Body olivaceous gray, with 4 vertical stripes (1 stripe on head across the yellow eye; 1 on caudal peduncle); shading to white ventrally, often with a sharp line of demarcation. Sharp, forward-pointing, erectile spine on each side of caudal peduncle which folds down into a groove. Scales minute. Teeth with denticulations on sides and top. Gill rakers 18-22 in anterior row, 19-24 in posterior row.

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Indo-Pacific: throughout the region except for the seas around the Arabian Peninsula. Eastern Pacific: lower Gulf of California to Panama, including the Revillagigedo, Cocos, Clipperton, and Galapagos islands.

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Occur in lagoon and seaward reefs with hard substrate; young abundant in tide pools (Ref. 3145, 48637). Benthopelagic (Ref. 58302). Often feeding near freshwater run-offs where certain algae grow on rocks that are grazed (Ref. 48637). Occasionally form schools; feed on filamentous algae in large aggregations. During spawning, clouds of eggs and sperm are preyed upon by eagle rays which are often present during spawning. Form spawning aggregations (Ref. 27825). Size of metamorphosis from post-larva stage to juvenile is 3.2 cm (Ref. 9267). Utilized as a food fish (Ref. 7364). Minimum depth reported taken from Ref. 27115.

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator : Randall, John E. | Collaborators

Randall, J.E., 1956. A revision of the surgeonfish genus Acanthurus. Pac. Sci. 10(2):159-235. (Ref. 1920)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 90363)

CITES (Ref. 94142)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Reports of ciguatera poisoning (Ref. 4690)




Human uses

Fisheries: commercial; aquarium: commercial
FAO(Publication : search) | FisheriesWiki | Sea Around Us

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Internet sources

BHL | Cloffa | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | DiscoverLife | DORIS | Faunafri | Fishtrace | GenBank(genome, nucleotide) | GOBASE | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | iSpecies | National databases | Public aquariums | PubMed | Scirus | SeaLifeBase | Tree of Life | uBio | Wikipedia(Go, Search) | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoological Record

Estimates of some properties based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.02455 (0.01556 - 0.03872), b=3.01 (2.88 - 3.14), based on LWR estimates for species & Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  2.8   ±0.35 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (K=0.35; assuming tm=2).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Low vulnerability (16 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Medium.