Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Mullidae
Etymology: Upeneus: Greek, ypene, -es = upper lip (Ref. 45335). More on author: Richardson.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; brackish; reef-associated; oceanodromous (Ref. 51243); depth range 0 - 42 m (Ref. 95469). Tropical; 30°N - 30°S, 92°E - 16°W
Eastern Indian Ocean to Western Pacific: from Andaman Islands to E Australia and to Japan and New Caledonia.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 25.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9947)
soft rays: 6. This species is distinguished by the following characters: D VIII + 9; pectoral fins 12-14; gill rakers 4-7 + 15-19 = 20-25; lateral line scales 28-31; the following measurements are in %SL- body depth at first dorsal fin origin 21-28 and at anus 18-24; caudal-peduncle depth 9.5-12, width 3.1-4.9L; maximum head depth 18-24; head depth through eye 14-20; head length 26-32; postorbital length 9.9–13; orbit length 5.3-8.9; upper jaw length 9.8-14; barbel length 13-21; caudal-peduncle length 22-27, caudal-fin length 29-34; anal-fin height 16-20; pelvic-fin length 19-24; pectoral-fin length 17-22, width 3.5-5.3; first dorsal-fin height 20-25; second dorsal-fin height 17-21; postorbital length 1.4–2.0 times in anal-fin height; all fins with red, brown or black stripes, bars or blotches; 7–19 oblique bars on caudal fin, 3-9 bars on upper lobe, 4-10 on lower lobe; first dorsal fin with a large blotch around tip; one red, brown or black mid-lateral body stripe from tip of snout through eye to caudal base; body and head ground colour white or beige, slightly darker above lateral line, with irregular red, brown or black spots and/or blotches; yellow barbels but may be pale brown or orange in fresh fish; most of body and fin pigmentation retained on preserved fish (Ref. 95469).
Known to enter lower reaches of rivers. Usually found on sandy bottoms in nearshore areas; usually solitary (Ref. 68964). Forms small to moderately large aggregations at all sizes (Ref. 48636). Minimum depth from Ref. 3470.
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Uiblein, F. and G. Gouws, 2014. A new goatfish species of the genus Upeneus (Mullidae) based on molecular and morphological screening and subsequent taxonomic analysis. Mar. Biol. Res. 10(7):655-681. (Ref. 95469)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 118484)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: commercial; aquarium: commercial
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningSpawning aggregationFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 24.8 - 29.1, mean 28.2 °C (based on 734 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00955 (0.00766 - 0.01190), b=3.07 (3.03 - 3.11), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.6 ±0.0 se; based on diet studies.
Generation time: 1.2 ( na - na) years. Estimated as median ln(3)/K based on 1 growth studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (17 of 100) .