Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Pomacentridae
(Damselfishes) > Pomacentrinae
Etymology: Stegastes: Greek, stegastos, -e, -on = covered (Ref. 45335). More on author: Castelnau.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; non-migratory; depth range 0 - 30 m (Ref. 7247). Tropical; 6°S - 30°S, 50°W - 31°W
Western Atlantic: Brazil. Caribbean (described from Cuban specimens) species refers to Stegastes xanthurus (formerly considered as a junior synonym of S. variabilis). Populations from Brazil and the Caribbean are genetically very distinct (Roberstson & van Tassell, 2012; accessed 08 August 2016; http://biogeodb.stri.si.edu/caribbean/en/thefishes/species/3884).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 12.5 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9626)
soft rays: 12 - 15. Caudal fin slightly forked, with rounded lobes. Dark brown or blue above, shading to yellow below. Narrow, dark, obliquely vertical lines on side. Snout and forehead have bright blue lines. Small dark spot in pectoral axil, another on top of caudal peduncle (Ref. 26938).
Adults inhabit inshore and offshore coral reefs. They feed mainly on benthic algae but also on sponges, ascidians and anemones while juveniles feed on invertebrates like harpacticoid copepods and nemerteans (Ref. 9626). Often solitary (Ref. 9626). Juveniles are aggressively territorial (Ref. 9626). Aggressive when breeding (Ref. 9710). Oviparous, distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205). Eggs are demersal and adhere to the substrate (Ref. 205). Males guard and aerate the eggs (Ref. 205). Taken incidentally in traps and small-meshed beach nets (Ref. 5217).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Oviparous, distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205). Eggs are demersal and adhere to the substrate (Ref. 205). Males guard and aerate the eggs (Ref. 205).
Allen, G.R., 1991. Damselfishes of the world. Mergus Publishers, Melle, Germany. 271 p. (Ref. 7247)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 120744)
CITES (Ref. 118484)
Threat to humans
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 22.5 - 27.5, mean 25.9 (based on 139 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01738 (0.01011 - 0.02987), b=2.98 (2.84 - 3.12), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (23 of 100) .