Acanthurus xanthopterus  Valenciennes, 1835

Yellowfin surgeonfish
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Acanthurus xanthopterus   AquaMaps   Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Image of Acanthurus xanthopterus (Yellowfin surgeonfish)
Acanthurus xanthopterus
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).   More on author: Valenciennes.

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Marine; reef-associated; depth range 1 - 100 m (Ref. 9267), usually 5 - 90 m (Ref. 27115).   Tropical; 24°C - 28°C (Ref. 27115); 30°N - 35°S, 23°E - 77°W

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 70.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 4795); common length : 50.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 30573)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 8 - 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 25-27; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 23 - 25. Body purplish gray when alive; grayish brown when preserved; a region of dull yellow in front of eye, a lesser extension posterior to lower part of eye; outer 1/3 of pectoral fin yellow, extreme distal part hyaline; dorsal and anal fins yellowish grey basally, dull yellow distally; caudal fin base whitish; caudal fin purplish. Anterior gill rakers 16-24, posterior 17-22. Caudal spine small.

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

Indo-Pacific: East Africa to the Hawaiian Islands and French Polynesia, north to southern Japan, south to the Great Barrier Reef and New Caledonia. Eastern Pacific: lower Gulf of California and Clipperton Island to Panama and the Galapagos Islands.

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Live in various reef habitats, sand slopes and lagoons (Ref. 48637). Juveniles inhabit shallow, protected, turbid inshore waters while adults prefer deeper areas of protected bays and lagoons. Also in outer reef areas (Ref. 1602). Benthopelagic (Ref. 58302). Schooling species, feed on diatoms, detritus film of sand, filamentous algae, hydroids, and pieces of fish (Ref. 1602, 48637). Probably the only surgeonfish that readily takes bait (Ref. 12484).

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

  Venomous (Ref. 4716)




Human uses

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

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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=0.02240 (0.01268 - 0.03956), b=3.02 (2.86 - 3.18), based on LWR estimates for species & Subfamily-body shape (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  2.9   ±0.36 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (K=0.287; Tmax=34).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Moderate vulnerability (37 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Medium.