Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

  Common names: goatfish (English), salmonete (Espanol), chivo (Espanol)
 
Mulloidichthys dentatus (Gill, 1862)


Mexican goatfish



Body elongate, cylindrical, underside of head and body nearly flat; snout blunt; eye high on side of head; mouth small, at lower edge of head, protrusible, top jaw not reaching to under front of eye; relatively small villiform or conical teeth; no teeth on roof of mouth; gill rakers 25-31  (average 28);  chin with a pair of large, long barbells, barbel length 17.6-24.5% of SL (average 20.5%); opercle with a spine; 2 well-separated dorsal fins, VIII (first spine minute, often embedded) + I, 8; anal rays I-II, 6; pectoral rays 16 (15-17), fin length 17.9-21.5% of SL (average 20.1%); a forked tail; scales large, slightly rough, 34-38 on lateral line; 6 rows of scales between 2 dorsal fins.

Yellow to greenish yellow on back and top of head, whitish on lower parts; a broad bright yellow midlateral stripe with a thinner bluish stripe immediately above; tail fin bright yellow.


Size: reaches 38 cm.

Inhabits coral and rocky reefs; often seen over adjacent sand and rubble bottoms.

Depth: 2-60 m.

Southern Baja and the Gulf of California to Peru, and all the offshore islands.

Very similar to M. vanicolensis, but differs in having, on average, fewer pectoral fin rays, a slightly shorter pectoral fin, slightly shorter barbels and fewer gill rakers. These differences are so slight that in practice it is probably not possible to separate all individals of the two species when they are together at the same location.
   
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Biology

Inhabits sand, mud and rock bottoms of shallow waters near the coast (Ref. 9322). Often occurs in small schools but may also be solitary. Feeds by digging in the sand with its barbels. Rests on the bottom at night, dramatically changing both color and daytime pattern to reddish blotches (Ref. 5227). Young are pelagic.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Distribution

Range Description

Mulloidichthys dentatus is endemic to the eastern Pacific, and is found from southern Baja and the Gulf of California, to Peru, including around all the offshore islands. However, its distribution is somewhat uncertain due to morphological similarity to M. vanicolensis, and lack of awareness of that species in the region until recently. Regardless, genetic studies at Baja and Clipperton indicate that M. dentatus is likely the most abundant of the two species in the eastern tropical Pacific.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Zoogeography

See Map (including site records) of Distribution in the Tropical Eastern Pacific 
 
Global Endemism: All species, East Pacific endemic, Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic

Regional Endemism: All species, TEP endemic, Continent + Island (s), Continent, Island (s)

Residency: Resident

Climate Zone: North Temperate (Californian Province &/or Northern Gulf of California), Northern Subtropical (Cortez Province + Sinaloan Gap), Northern Tropical (Mexican Province to Nicaragua + Revillagigedos), Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Eastern Pacific: southern California, USA to Peru, including the Galapagos Islands; rare north of southern Baja California, Mexico.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Eastern Pacific.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© FishWise Professional

Source: FishWise Professional

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Depth

Depth Range (m): 2 (S) - 60 (S)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Morphology

Size

Length max (cm): 38.0 (S)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Size

Maximum size: 310 mm TL
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© FishWise Professional

Source: FishWise Professional

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Max. size

31.0 cm TL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 2850))
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Type Information

Type for Mulloidichthys dentatus
Catalog Number: USNM 3699
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Collector(s): J. Xantus
Locality: C. San Lucas, Baja California Sur, Mexico, Pacific
  • Type:
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes

Source: National Museum of Natural History Collections

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Mulloidichthys dentatus is a reef-associated species, inhabiting sand, mud, and rock substrata to depths of 60 m (Schneider 1995). This species can be occasionally found in estuaries and coastal lagoons along the tropical eastern Pacific coast (Cooke 1992). At the Gulf of Chiriqui, this fish could be found in the deep zone over middle size rocks and sand, deep rocky walls, zones of massive corals, and deep rocky reef (Dominici-Arosemena and Wolff 2006).

Systems
  • Marine
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Environment

reef-associated; marine; depth range 3 - 46 m (Ref. 5227)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Depth range based on 31 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 7 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0.3 - 57.5
  Temperature range (°C): 24.258 - 27.666
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.290 - 5.562
  Salinity (PPS): 32.938 - 35.023
  Oxygen (ml/l): 4.243 - 4.879
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.327 - 0.628
  Silicate (umol/l): 2.028 - 4.148

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0.3 - 57.5

Temperature range (°C): 24.258 - 27.666

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.290 - 5.562

Salinity (PPS): 32.938 - 35.023

Oxygen (ml/l): 4.243 - 4.879

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.327 - 0.628

Silicate (umol/l): 2.028 - 4.148
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Depth: 3 - 46m.
From 3 to 46 meters.

Habitat: reef-associated.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© FishWise Professional

Source: FishWise Professional

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Salinity: Marine, Marine Only

Inshore/Offshore: Inshore, Inshore Only

Water Column Position: Bottom, Bottom only

Habitat: Reef (rock &/or coral), Rocks, Corals, Reef and soft bottom, Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom), Soft bottom (mud, sand,gravel, beach, estuary & mangrove), Sand & gravel

FishBase Habitat: Reef Associated
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Trophic Strategy

Inhabits sand, mud and rock bottoms of shallow waters near the coast (Ref. 9322). Often occurs in small schools but may also be solitary. Feeds by digging in the sand with its barbels. Rests on the bottom at night, dramatically changing both color and daytime pattern to reddish blotches (Ref. 5227). Carnivore (Ref. 57615).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Feeding

Feeding Group: Carnivore

Diet: mobile benthic worms, mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs), mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves, bony fishes
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Life History and Behavior

Reproduction

Egg Type: Pelagic, Pelagic larva
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Mulloidichthys dentatus

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 14
Species With Barcodes: 1
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2010

Assessor/s
Allen, G.R., Robertson, R.D., Edgar, G., Rivera, F., Zapata, F., Merlen, G. & Barraza, E.

Reviewer/s
Collen, B., Richman, N., Beresford, A., Chenery, A. & Ram, M.

Contributor/s
De Silva, R., Milligan, H., Lutz, M., Batchelor, A., Jopling, B., Kemp, K., Lewis, S., Lintott, P., Sears, J., Wilson, P., Smith, J. & Livingston, F.

Justification
Mulloidichthys dentatus has been assessed as Least Concern. This species is widespread in the eastern Pacific region and common throughout its range. There are no known major threats to this species.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

IUCN Red List: Not evaluated / Listed

CITES: Not listed
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Population

Population
Mulloidichthys dentatus is common throughout its range. It was studied in different sites in the Galapagos Archipelago, where it was found to have an overall mean abundance of 5.75 individuals per 500 m2 (Edgar et al. 2004). However, this fish was not found in surveys in Costa Rica in the Gulf of Papagayo (Dominici-Arosemena et al. 2005), Gulf Dulce (Figueroa 2001) or Catalinas Island (Espinoza and Salas 2005).

According to Aburto-Oropeza and Balart (2001), M. dentatus is a frequent and abundant species at Los Islotes in the Gulf of California, with an occurrence frequency of 30–70%. In Cabo Pulmo, Mexico, this fish was considered scarce, with a relative abundance of 0.1–1%, and a relative frequency of 25–50% (Villarreal-Cavazos et al. 2000). In Bahía de Navidad, Jalisco, México, this fish was captured 9 times within 12 one-month long field trips throughout a year (Rojo-Vázquez et al. 2001). A survey at Gorgona Island coral reefs, Colombia (Rubio 1986), showed that this fish seems to be abundant in coralline bottoms and frequent in rocky and sandy substrata. Zapata and Morales (1997) recorded a density of 1.255 +/- 7.516 individuals per 10 m2, with an observational frequency of 20.6% at Gorgona Island. According to Robertson and Allen (1996), this fish was commonly seen or collected, and apparently abundant enough to have a resident sub-population at Clipperton Atoll.

Population Trend
Stable
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Threats

Major Threats
There are no known major threats impacting Mulloidichthys dentatus.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Least Concern (LC)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
There are no species-specific conservation measures in place for Mulloidichthys dentatus. However, it is present in some marine protected areas in Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and Mexico (Roca et al. 2003, WDPA 2006).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!