Overview

Comprehensive Description

Biology

Occurs from rocky coastal reefs to seaward reefs (Ref. 9710). Often in schools, feeding with surgeonfishes by scraping off algae from rocks or dead coral (Ref. 9710). Marketed fresh and salted (Ref. 5217).
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Distribution

Range Description

This species is found from Bermuda and South Florida to Venezuela.
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Western Atlantic: Bermuda, southern Florida (USA), and Bahamas to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (Ref. 13628).
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Western Atlantic.
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Physical Description

Morphology

Dorsal spines (total): 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 10; Analspines: 3; Analsoft rays: 11
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Size

Maximum size: 770 mm TL
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Max. size

77.0 cm TL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 13628)); max. published weight: 7,000 g (Ref. 5217)
  • Cervigón, F., R. Cipriani, W. Fischer, L. Garibaldi, M. Hendrickx, A.J. Lemus, R. Márquez, J.M. Poutiers, G. Robaina and B. Rodriguez 1992 Fichas FAO de identificación de especies para los fines de la pesca. Guía de campo de las especies comerciales marinas y de aquas salobres de la costa septentrional de Sur América. FAO, Rome. 513 p. Preparado con el financiamento de la Comisión de Comunidades Europeas y de NORAD. (Ref. 5217)   http://www.fishbase.org/references/FBRefSummary.php?id=5217&speccode=7 External link.
  • Cervigón, F. 1994 Los peces marinos de Venezuela. Volume 3. Fundación Científica Los Roques, Caracas,Venezuela. 295 p. (Ref. 13628)   http://www.fishbase.org/references/FBRefSummary.php?id=13628&speccode=961 External link.
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Diagnostic Description

With blue-green teeth. Adults generally black or blue-black, with centers of scales and unscaled part of head bright blue, and blue band between eyes. Only large black or blue-black parrotfish in the Caribbean (Ref. 26938).
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
This species is reef associated from 5-75 m. It feeds on algae and can be observed (and heard) using their beaks to crunch off pieces of corals and other substrates during the day. It is more abundant along in-shore reef flats.

Systems
  • Marine
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Environment

reef-associated; marine; depth range 5 - 75 m (Ref. 9710), usually ? - 20 m
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Depth range based on 75 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 58 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0.5 - 16.6
  Temperature range (°C): 26.401 - 28.067
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.125 - 3.505
  Salinity (PPS): 35.838 - 37.096
  Oxygen (ml/l): 4.285 - 4.706
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.046 - 0.211
  Silicate (umol/l): 1.180 - 4.727

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0.5 - 16.6

Temperature range (°C): 26.401 - 28.067

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.125 - 3.505

Salinity (PPS): 35.838 - 37.096

Oxygen (ml/l): 4.285 - 4.706

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.046 - 0.211

Silicate (umol/l): 1.180 - 4.727
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

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Depth: 5 - 75m.
From 5 to 75 meters.

Habitat: reef-associated. Inhabits reefs and rocky areas (Ref. 5521), generally in less than 20 m depth. Often in schools feeding with surgeonfishes by scraping off algae from rocks or dead coral (Ref. 9710).
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Trophic Strategy

Occurs from rocky coastal reefs to seaward reefs (Ref. 9710). Feeding with surgeonfishes by scraping off algae from rocks or dead coral (Ref. 9710). Herbivore (Ref. 57616).
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
DD
Data Deficient

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2012

Assessor/s
Rocha, L.A., Choat, J.H., Clements, K.D., Russell, B., Myers, R., Lazuardi, M.E., Muljadi, A., Pardede, S. & Rahardjo, P.

Reviewer/s
McIlwain, J. & Craig, M.T.

Contributor/s

Justification
This is the third largest parrotfish in the Caribbean. Large individuals are targeted by fishermen and there is anecdotal evidence suggesting population declines. However, there are no catch landings data available that indicate a decrease in the population. It is therefore listed as Data Deficient. Further research is needed on its population status and harvest levels.

History
  • 2010
    Data Deficient
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Population

Population
Currently population size/trends have not been assessed. This species is not present in FAO global production estimates, however, it is not abundant and anecdotal evidence suggests they may be decreasing in numbers.

Anecdotally, this species was present in the Antilles and Barbados but is not present there now. It is the most abundant large scarid at Las Rocas, Venezuela (J.H. Choat pers comm. 2009).

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
A commercial fishery exists for some of the larger individuals. Exact population figures for this species are not known, however, anecdotal evidence suggests it is decreasing in numbers in parts of its range (i.e., in Antilles and Barbados).

Parrotfishes show varying degrees of habitat preference and utilization of coral reef habitats, with some species spending the majority of their life stages on coral reefs, while others primarily utilize seagrass beds, mangroves, algal beds, and /or rocky reefs. Although the majority of the parrotfishes occur in mixed habitat (primarily inhabiting seagrass beds, mangroves, and rocky reefs) approximately 78% of these mixed habitat species are experiencing greater than 30% loss of coral reef area and habitat quality across their distributions. Of those species that occur exclusively in coral reef habitat, more than 80% are experiencing a greater than 30% of coral reef loss and degradation across their distributions. However, more research is needed to understand the long-term effects of habitat loss and degradation on these species populations. Widespread coral reef loss and declining habitat conditions are particularly worrying for species that depend on live coral reefs for food and shelter especially as studies have shown that protection of pristine habitats facilitate the persistence of adult populations in species that have spatially separated adult and juvenile habitats. Furthermore, coral reef loss and declining habitat conditions are particularly worrying for some corallivorous excavating parrotfishes that play major roles in reef dynamics and sedimentation (Comeros-Raynal et al. 2012).
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Data deficient (DD)
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
There are no species-specific conservation measures in place for this species. However, its distribution overlaps several marine protected areas within its range.
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Importance

fisheries: minor commercial; aquarium: commercial; price category: high; price reliability: very questionable: based on ex-vessel price for species in this family
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Wikipedia

Midnight parrotfish

The midnight parrotfish (Scarus coelestinus) is a species of parrotfish which inhabits coral reefs mainly in the Caribbean, Bahamas, and Florida.

The typical size is between 30 and 60 cm, but it can grow to almost 1 m. It has been observed as far north as Maryland and as far south as Brazil.[2] Usually found between 3 and 80 m deep, it swims over reefs and sandy areas, where it feeds on algae by scraping it with its teeth fused into a beak.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Rocha, L.A., Choat, J.H., Clements, K.D., Russell, B., Myers, R., Lazuardi, M.E., Muljadi, A., Pardede, S. & Rahardjo, P. 2012. Scarus coelestinus. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 9 January 2013.
  2. ^ Humann, DeLoach (2002). Reef Fish Identification - Florida Caribbean Bahamas. New World Publications, Inc. ISBN 1-878348-30-2. 
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