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Overview

Comprehensive Description

Biology

Adults inhabit reef flats and lagoon reefs, in areas with seagrass or mixed sand, rubble, and coral (Ref. 9710). They often form small aggregations (Ref. 8631). Juveniles occur inshore and usually form small groups in estuarine seagrass beds. Adults can be found in inner as well as outer reefs and are territorial (Ref. 48636). Feed mainly on hard-shelled prey including crustaceans, mollusks and sea urchins. Oviparous, distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205). In Hong Kong live fish markets (Ref. 27253).
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Distribution

Range Description

This species is found in the Indo-West Pacific, from Sri Lanka to Tonga, and from Ogasawara and Ryukyu Islands to New Caledonia and northeastern Australia (Myers 1991, Sadovy and Cornish 2000).
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Indo-West Pacific: Sri Lanka eastward to French Polynesia, north to the Ryukyu Islands, south to New Caledonia.
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Indo-West Pacific.
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Physical Description

Morphology

Dorsal spines (total): 12 - 13; Dorsal soft rays (total): 7; Analspines: 3; Analsoft rays: 7 - 9
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Size

Max. size

50.0 cm TL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 90102))
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Maximum size: 380 mm SL
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Diagnostic Description

A pair of greatly enlarged canine teeth present in front of jaws. Undergoes very little change in color with growth. Adults can be recognized by the white underside of the belly and head. Juveniles are greenish when in seagrass (Ref. 48636).
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
This species is found in seagrass beds and areas of mixed coral, rubble and sand of reef flats, channels and lagoons from depths of one to 25 m.

This species spawns in aggregations. For example, at Palau, it aggregates to spawn along the outer edge of fringing reefs around the new and full moons of January to March (Myers 1991). The planktonic larval duration of C. anchorago was found to be 19.3 +/- 1.8 days in Palau (Victor 1986).

In Hong Kong, this species was found singly, although sometimes small groups were observed, in shallow boulder and coral areas in a depth of at least 10 m (Sadovy and Cornish 2000). In Micronesia, it was observed in rubble or sandy areas, seagrass beds and areas of mixed coral, rubble and sand of reef flats, channels and lagoon at a depth of 25 m (Myers 1991). In Australia, it inhabits reef crests and slopes with algae and soft corals. Juveniles occur inshore and often form small aggregations in seagrass beds where near mangrove or freshwater run-offs (Lieske and Myers 1994, Kuiter 1992, 2000). In the Solomon Islands, this species is moderately common and usually found in slity areas (Allen 2006).

An enlarged canine is present on each side at rear of upper jaw and lateral line continuous smoothly curved with 29 pored scales. This species is distinctive and can be recognized by a large rectangular white saddle situated dorsally on caudal peduncle extending forward below rear of the dorsal fin (Kuiter 2000, Kuiter and Tonozuka 2001, Westneat 2001). The body colour undergoes very little change and does not change much according to size or age (Sadovy and Cornish 2000). Adults are territorial (Kuiter and Tonozuka 2001) and feed primarily on hard-shelled invertebrate prey such as crustaceans, molluscs, crabs , sea urchins (Tedman 1980, Ferry-Graham et al. 2002) and fishes (Bellwood et al. 2006). This species has been observed to use its large teeth to pick up rocks and search for prey beneath (Sadovy and Cornish 2000).

Maximum size of this species is 38 cm SL (Allen 2000, Westneat 2001) and population doubling time is approximately 4.5-14years (Froese and Pauly).

Systems
  • Marine
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Depth range based on 34 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 26 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0.4575 - 37
  Temperature range (°C): 28.658 - 28.973
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.049 - 0.622
  Salinity (PPS): 33.950 - 34.678
  Oxygen (ml/l): 4.522 - 4.655
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.055 - 0.246
  Silicate (umol/l): 1.049 - 2.169

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0.4575 - 37

Temperature range (°C): 28.658 - 28.973

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.049 - 0.622

Salinity (PPS): 33.950 - 34.678

Oxygen (ml/l): 4.522 - 4.655

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.055 - 0.246

Silicate (umol/l): 1.049 - 2.169
 
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Environment

reef-associated; marine; depth range 1 - 25 m (Ref. 90102)
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Depth range based on 34 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 26 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0.4575 - 37
  Temperature range (°C): 28.658 - 28.973
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.049 - 0.622
  Salinity (PPS): 33.950 - 34.678
  Oxygen (ml/l): 4.522 - 4.655
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.055 - 0.246
  Silicate (umol/l): 1.049 - 2.169

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0.4575 - 37

Temperature range (°C): 28.658 - 28.973

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.049 - 0.622

Salinity (PPS): 33.950 - 34.678

Oxygen (ml/l): 4.522 - 4.655

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.055 - 0.246

Silicate (umol/l): 1.049 - 2.169
 
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Depth: 0 - 25m.
Recorded at 25 meters.

Habitat: reef-associated.
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Trophic Strategy

Occurs inshore (Ref. 75154).
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Life History and Behavior

Life Cycle

Oviparous, distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205).
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Choerodon anchorago

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 1
Specimens with Barcodes: 19
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2010

Assessor/s
Shea, S. & Liu, M.

Reviewer/s
Sadovy, Y. & Carpenter, K.E.

Contributor/s

Justification
This species is widepread in the western Pacific, and is common in much of its range. Although it is fished for food and is collected for the aquarium trade, there is no indication of population decline and no major threats are known. It is listed as Least Concern.
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Population

Population
Total numbers of this species are not known and there is limited information on the current population status of this species. However, this species is common in many parts of its range.

It is moderately abundant in Hong Kong waters and was observed mostly in shallow boulders and coral areas at a depth of at least 10 m (Sadovy and Cornish 2000), but there is no quantitative data on this species in those areas. In Hong Kong, this species is also found in local markets (Situ and Sadovy 2004).

In Solomon Islands, this species is moderately common (Allen 2006).

Unsworth et al. (2007) found that this species is one of the most abundant seagrass fish species in the Wakatobi Marine National Park, Indonesia with a mean density of 17.9 +/- 4.2 individuals per 100 m2 during high tide.

Large populations of C. anchorago have been found in Baraulu, and it is a common fish in the Duduli marine protected area (Aswani et al. undated).

Only 28 individuals of C. anchorago have been recorded in the Kambing Island, East Java, Indonesia (Sumadhiharga 2006).

In New Caledonia, a total of 509 individuals were observed in various UVC surveys with body sizes of 8-12 cm TL (M. Kulbicki pers. comm. 2008).

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
There are no major threats known to this species. However, this species is one of the most common of the genus found in the locally-sourced live food fish trade. For instance, it is taken by hook-and-line, fish traps, monofilament nets or with spears by divers (Ishizuka et al. 1996, Westneat 2001) and turns up sporadically in markets particularly during summer months (Sadovy and Cornish 2000) or being exported for international trade (Ishizuka et al. 1996). However, the levels of fishing pressure and landing fishery data for this species are not known.

Furthermore, it has been reported to form spawning aggregations during the spawning season (Myers 1991), such grouping behaviour might put the species vulnerable to any kind of fishing pressure and increasing the possibility of permanent loss of the population from a particular site since heavily fishing on a specific spawning aggregation could have taken the entire adult population over a very short time period (Sadovy and Domeier 2005). However, the targeted of spawning aggregations of this species has not been reported.

The majority of Choerodon captured by western Australia commercial fishes are reported as Choerodon spp. (Penn et al. 2005) which making the catch statistics to be under-representative of the real landings of this species. The commercial landing weight for Choerodon spp. in western Australia is approximately, 28 t each month and in New South Wales, about 69 t of mixed species (wrasse, tuskfish and gropers) were collected commercially in a one year period (NSW Department of Primary Industries 2005).

This species is occasionally taken for the marine aquarium trade (Westneat 2001). It is marketed for export from Queensland, small size is valued at $ AUD 12, and medium and large sizes at $ AUD 16.5 (Ryan and Clarke 2005).
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Least Concern (LC)
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
There are no species-specific conservation measures for this species. However, this species distribution includes several Marine Protected Areas within its range.

This species has been observed in the Ningaloon Marine Park which includes both a sanctuary for no-take and recreation zones for anglers (Westera et al. 2003). Also, it was observed in the Wakatobi Marine Park, Indonesia (Unsworth et al. 2007), Marine protected area of Nha Trang Bay, Vietnam (Dung 2007), Masinloc marine protected areas, the Philippines (IW:LEARN 2008), the Great Barrier Reef, Tung Ping Chau Marine Park and Cape d Aguilar (Cornish 2000).

It is worth noting that the marine park doesnt imply as a no-take zone since limited fishing activity is allowed within certain marine parks, such as Tung Ping Chau Marine Park, Hong Kong. Cage trap or monofilament nets are still allowed within the Tung Ping Chau Marine Park for licensed fishers (AFCD 2007). Furthermore, illegal and destructive fishing activities have been reported in the many Southeast Asian countries (IW:LEARN 2008) due to the poorly managed or legislation is poorly enforced (Chou et al. 2002). Thus, such protected areas might provide insufficient protection to the species.

In Queensland, recreational fishing for reef fish for personal home aquariums is allowed, but currently, there is no information available on the level of recreational harvest of marine aquarium species. Only licensed fishermen are allowed to capture fishes for aquarium trade in Australia and in Queensland, the total number of fishes harvested for the ornamental fish fishery approximately 140,000 in 1991 involving about 150 species, 240,000 in 1995, 140,000 in 1997, 2,108,345 annually (1998-2003) (MCS 2001, Ryan and Clarke 2005).

In Queensland, the minimum legal size for tuskfish (Choerodon spp.) is 30 cm and daily bag limit is five in total for all Choerodon species per angler, in addition, closed season for fishing applies to coral reef finfish (Queensland Government).
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Importance

fisheries: commercial; aquarium: commercial
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Wikipedia

Orange-dotted tuskfish

The orange-dotted tuskfish, Choerodon anchorago, is a species of wrasse native to the Indian Ocean from Sri Lanka eastward to French Polynesia in the western Pacific. Its range extends north to the Ryukyus and south to New Caledonia. It inhabits reefs at depths from 1 to 25 m (3.3 to 82.0 ft). This species can reach a length of 50 cm (20 in). It is commercially important, and can be found in the aquarium trade.[2]


Common Name[edit]

Orange-dotted tuskfish

Habitat[edit]

Salt water

Dispersion[edit]

Thai Sea Boundary

Utilization[edit]

Fishery: Small Trading; Aquarium: Trade

References[edit]

  1. ^ Shea, S. & Liu, M. 2010. Choerodon anchorago. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.1. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 14 September 2013.
  2. ^ Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2013). "Choerodon anchorago" in FishBase. August 2013 version.
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