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Overview

Comprehensive Description

Macroramphosus scolopax (Linnaeus, 1758)

Aegean Sea : 9700-193 (1 spc.), 20.01.1969 , Bueyuekmenderes Basin, 72 m , M. Demir ; 9700-194 (1 spc.), 14.08.1989 , Goekova Bay , trawl , 70 m, N. Meriç ; 9700-539 (1 spc.), 14.08.1989 , Goekova Bay , trawl , 70 m, N. Meriç ; 9700-185 (1 spc.), 14.08.1989 , Goekova Bay , trawl , 70 m, N. Meriç . Mediterranean Sea : 9700-743 (4 spc.), April 2004 , Iskenderun Bay , trawl , 250 m, C. Dalyan .

  • Nurettin Meriç, Lütfiye Eryilmaz, Müfit Özulug (2007): A catalogue of the fishes held in the Istanbul University, Science Faculty, Hydrobiology Museum. Zootaxa 1472, 29-54: 41-41, URL:http://www.zoobank.org/urn:lsid:zoobank.org:pub:428F3980-C1B8-45FF-812E-0F4847AF6786
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Macroramphosus scolopax (Linnaeus, 1758)

(Figure 2A)

Material examined: ESFM-PIS/9602, 4 specimens, 56-96 mm SL, northern Cyprus ( 35º24’N - 33º07’E ), 540 m, 10 July 1996 ; ESFM-PIS/0409, 5 specimens, 66-106 mm SL, Kusadasi Bay ( 37º56’N - 27º01’E ), 140-150 m, 22 March 2004 .

Description: First dorsal finrays V -VI, second dorsal finrays 11-13, anal finrays 18-19, pectoral finrays 16, caudal finrays 19-22. Body compressed and deep (maximum body depth 3.71 to 4.60 times in SL); widest point passing through a vertical line above pelvic fins. Body height sharply descending between the first soft ray of second dorsal fin and the caudal peduncle, forming a significant hump. Head elongate with long and tubular snout. Mouth opening very small, toothless, and located at tip of snout. Eye large, its diameter greater than postocular head length; located close to dorsum of head, bearing a prominent supraorbital crest; a patch of small spinules on the anterior part of the eye (Figure 3A). First dorsal fin originating above anus; second spine strong, greatly enlarged with serrated posterior edge (total number of denticules 14-23, mean=17.57), extending beyond second dorsal fin base. Body covered with small and finely toothed scales, giving the body a sandpapery feel. Two series of bony plates embedded in the skin on the back between head and dorsal fin, each series consisting of three well-developed plates and a fourth much smaller plate; posterior edge of each plate serrated in adults. Ventral body profile convex; ventral scutes protruding; a prominent projecting scute between the pelvic and anal fins (Figure 4A). Fresh specimens of both juveniles and adults are orange, red or pinkish on the back; paler and silvery on the sides. Three or four red blotches generally occur (adults) on the second spine of first dorsal fin. Morphometric values are given in Table 1.

Distribution and biology: M. scolopax is a cosmopolitan species, probably with a worldwide distribution. It occurs throughout the Mediterranean Sea (excluding the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea; Bilecenoglu et al., 2002), Atlantic, Indian and Pacific oceans, mainly in tropical and temperate latitudes between 20º and 40º N (Ehrich, 1975, 1986; Fritzsche, 2002).

The species is known to inhabit depths down to 500 m or more, but is more abundant between 50 - 200 m (Wheeler, 1973; Fischer et al., 1987). A school of M. scolopax was previously observed by the author at an exceptional depth of 6 m along Kas coasts (eastern Mediterranean coast of Turkey), during 1995. Age and growth parameters of M. scolopax are available only from the Atlantic Ocean, revealing a short life span (maximum of six years) and a fast growth (Ehrich, 1976; Brethes, 1979; Borges, 2000). The species is a benthic feeder; stomach contents of specimens from Moroccon coasts and Great Meteor Seamount generally included foraminifers associated with non-living bottom material (i.e. sand) and crustaceans (Ehrich, 1976; Brethes, 1979; Matthiessen et al., 2003). In Japanese coast, M. scolopax feeds on crustaceans, especially amphipods (Miyazaki et al., 2004). Maximum known size for the species is 22.8 cm total length (Borges, 2001); however, lengths exceeding 16.0 cm are uncommon.

  • Murat Bilecenoglu (2006): Status of the genus Macroramphosus (Syngnathiformes: Centriscidae) in the eastern Mediterranean Sea. Zootaxa 1273, 55-64: 57-57, URL:http://www.zoobank.org/urn:lsid:zoobank.org:pub:489D488F-6F25-4950-8FA4-8FDBF4C8AB00
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Biology

Found between the seabed and midwater on the lower continental shelf, over sand. Juveniles found in oceanic surface waters (Ref. 2683); adults normally live close to the bottom (normally in 50-350 m depth (Ref. 47377)). Gregarious. Juveniles feed mainly on pelagic invertebrates, mainly copepods, while adults feed on bottom invertebrates (Ref. 6732). Seems to be sympatric with Macroramphosus gracilis (Lowe, 1839) all around the world (Ref. 89357).
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Distribution

Western Atlantic: 42.96°N and the Greater Antilles; also northern South America and Argentina
  • North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
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Range Description

Macroramphosus scolopax is distributed in the western Atlantic off the east coast of the USA and the Greater Antilles, northern South America and Argentina. It also occurs in the eastern Atlantic, the Mediterranean and the Indo-West Pacific, mostly in temperate latitudes between 20o and 40o N. (R. Fritzsche pers. comm. 2009).
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Western Atlantic: Gulf of Maine to Argentina (Ref. 37039). Eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean. Indo-West Pacific. Mainly in temperate latitudes between 20° and 40°N. Presence in Somalia to be confirmed (Ref. 30573).
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Circumglobal (especially in temperate latitudes), including Mediterranean Sea, Hawaiian Ridge.
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Widespread in warm seas. Western Atlantic: the offing of Nantucket Massachusetts Bay. Eastern Atlantic: southern England to the coast and banks of Morocco and in the Mediterranean.
  • Bigelow, H.B. and W.C. Schroeder, 1953; Ehrich, S., 1986; 1990 ; Schneider, W., 1990; Whiteheat, P.J.P., M.-L. Bauchot, J-C. Hureau, J. Nielsen, and E. Tortonese, 1984.
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Physical Description

Morphology

Dorsal spines (total): 6 - 8; Dorsal soft rays (total): 11 - 13; Analspines: 0; Analsoft rays: 18 - 20; Vertebrae: 24
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Size

Maximum size: 200 mm TL
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Max. size

20.0 cm TL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 4508))
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to 20 cm TL (male/unsexed).
  • Bigelow, H.B. and W.C. Schroeder, 1953; Ehrich, S., 1986; 1990 ; Schneider, W., 1990; Whiteheat, P.J.P., M.-L. Bauchot, J-C. Hureau, J. Nielsen, and E. Tortonese, 1984.
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Diagnostic Description

Description

Found between the seabed and midwater on the lower continental shelf, over sand. Juveniles found in oceanic surface waters (Ref. 2683); adults normally live close to the bottom (normally in 50-150 m depth). Gregarious. Juveniles feed mainly on pelagic invertebrates, mainly copepods, while adults feed on bottom invertebrates (Ref. 6732).
  • Anon. (1996). FishBase 96 [CD-ROM]. ICLARM: Los Baños, Philippines. 1 cd-rom pp.
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Reddish pink in color, silvery below (Ref. 5382). Body compressed, without scales. Mouth is placed at the end of the long tubular snout (Ref. 35388). Snout length (6.1cm), length of second dorsal spine (LDS 3.9 cm) (Ref. 39875).
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Type Information

Cotype for Macroramphosus scolopax
Catalog Number: USNM 51389
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Preparation: Illustration
Collector(s): D. Jordan & J. Snyder
Locality: Misaki,, Japan, Pacific
  • Cotype:
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Ecology

Habitat

Known from seamounts and knolls
  • Stocks, K. 2009. Seamounts Online: an online information system for seamount biology. Version 2009-1. World Wide Web electronic publication.
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benthic
  • North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
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Found between the seabed and midwater on the lower continental shelf, over sand.
  • North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Macroramphosus scolopax is a bethopelagic, subtropical species, typically found on the lower continental shelf over sand substrates (R. Fritzsche pers. comm. 2009). This species is also known from the upper slope and oceanic seamounts. While normally found at a depth range of 50–350m, it has also been taken from depths of 600 m. Food items for this species include copepods, foraminiferans, amphipods, gammarid shrimps, polychaetes, and paguridae. This species is found in large schools.

Systems
  • Marine
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Environment

demersal; marine; depth range 25 - 600 m (Ref. 9563), usually 50 - 350 m (Ref. 47377)
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Depth range based on 779 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 538 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0 - 80000
  Temperature range (°C): 3.096 - 26.764
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.286 - 28.203
  Salinity (PPS): 33.843 - 38.781
  Oxygen (ml/l): 2.268 - 6.323
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.094 - 1.945
  Silicate (umol/l): 0.677 - 23.553

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0 - 80000

Temperature range (°C): 3.096 - 26.764

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.286 - 28.203

Salinity (PPS): 33.843 - 38.781

Oxygen (ml/l): 2.268 - 6.323

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.094 - 1.945

Silicate (umol/l): 0.677 - 23.553
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

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Depth: 25 - 600m.
From 25 to 600 meters.

Habitat: demersal.
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Demersal; marine; depth range 25 - 600 m. Adults found near the bottom (normally at 50-150 m depth) over sand habitats on the lower continental shelf. Juveniles found in oceanic surface waters.
  • Bigelow, H.B. and W.C. Schroeder, 1953; Ehrich, S., 1986; 1990 ; Schneider, W., 1990; Whiteheat, P.J.P., M.-L. Bauchot, J-C. Hureau, J. Nielsen, and E. Tortonese, 1984.
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Trophic Strategy

Found on the continental shelf and continental slope (Ref. 75154). Lives in sandy or muddy places 20 to 150 m depth (Ref. 9137). Schooling species (Ref. 75154).
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Juveniles feed mainly on pelagic invertebrates, mainly copepods; adults feed on bottom invertebrates.
  • Bigelow, H.B. and W.C. Schroeder, 1953; Ehrich, S., 1986; 1990 ; Schneider, W., 1990; Whiteheat, P.J.P., M.-L. Bauchot, J-C. Hureau, J. Nielsen, and E. Tortonese, 1984.
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Life History and Behavior

Behavior

Diet

Juveniles feed mainly on copepods and adults prefer bottom invertebrates
  • North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
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Reproduction

Spawns commonly from October-March.
  • Bigelow, H.B. and W.C. Schroeder, 1953; Ehrich, S., 1986; 1990 ; Schneider, W., 1990; Whiteheat, P.J.P., M.-L. Bauchot, J-C. Hureau, J. Nielsen, and E. Tortonese, 1984.
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Macroramphosus scolopax

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 27
Specimens with Barcodes: 64
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Macrorhamphosus scolopax

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 1
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Barcode data: Macroramphosus scolopax

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


There are 2 barcode sequences available from BOLD and GenBank.  Below is a sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.  See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen and other sequences.

ACACGCTGATTTTTCTCGACTAATCACAAAGACATCGGCACCCTTTATCTAGTATTTGGTGCTTGAGCCGGAATAGTAGGAACTGCCCTC---AGCTTACTTATCCGAGCAGAACTAAGCCAACCCGGCGCCCTTCTTGGGGAT---GACCAGATTTATAACGTAATTGTTACGGCCCACGCCTTTGTAATGATTTTCTTTATAGTAATACCAATCATGATTGGGGGCTTTGGCAACTGACTTATTCCCCTAATG---ATCGGAGCACCCGACATGGCATTCCCCCGAATGAATAACATGAGCTTTTGACTACTCCCTCCCTCATTCCTTCTGCTCCTAGCCTCTTCTGGAGTTGAAGCCGGTGCGGGCACCGGCTGAACAGTCTACCCCCCACTATCAGGAAACCTCGCTCACGCTGGGGCCTCCGTTGACTTA---ACCATTTTCTCCCTCCACTTAGCCGGTATCTCATCTATTCTAGGGGCCATTAATTTCATCACAACCATTATTAACATGAAACCTCCCGCAATCTCGCAATACCAAACACCACTCTTTGTGTGAGCAGTACTAATTACAGCTGTTCTTCTTCTCCTCTCCCTGCCCGTCCTGGCCGCC---GGCATTACAATGCTTCTCACGGACCGAAATTTAAATACCACCTTCTTTGACCCGGCAGGTGGAGGTGACCCCATCCTCTACCAGCACCTATTCTGATTCTTCGGGCACCCCGAAGTATACATTCTTATTCTTCCGGGATTCGGAATAATCTCCCACATTGTCGCCTACTACGCAGGTAAAAAA---GAACCTTTCGGCTACATGGGTATGGTCTGAGCTATGATGGCTATCGGTCTCCTCGGATTCATCGTGTGAGCCCATCACATGTTTACAGTAGGGATGGACGTCGACACCCGAGCTTATTTTACATCTGCAACCATGATTATTGCCATTCCAACGGGGGTAAAAGTCTTTAGCTGACTA---GCAACA
-- end --

Download FASTA File
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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
Fritzsche, R., Matsuura, K., Collette, B., Nelson, J., Dooley, J., Carpenter, K., Bartnik, S., Robinson, E. & Morgan, S.K.

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
Macroramphosus scolopax has been assessed as Least Concern. This is a widespread species which is locally abundant in at least parts of its range, although its abundance is sometimes highly variable. Taxonomic research is needed to determine the validity of Macroramphosus gracilis.
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Population

Population
Macroramphosus scolopax is described as usually being very abundant off the coast of Portugal, on the outer continental shelf (Marques et al. 2005, Lopes et al. 2006). Surveys from the 1970s indicated a high abundance of this species, in the region of 360,000 t. During the 1980s, there was a decline in this abundance, followed by an increase again between 1990 and 2003 (Marques et al. 2005). More recent acoustic surveys from 1998 to 2003 indicate a decline in abundance from 500,000 t to 175,000 t.

An acoustic survey off the coast of Morocco in 1976 estimated a biomass of 1,300,000 t (Brêthes 1979).

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
In the early 1970s, Macroramphosus scolopax was commonly taken in purse seine nets with catch rates of 25–30 tonnes per boat per day, with a landing of 10,000 tonnes in 1973 (Morais 1981). In the late 1970s, landings increased to 33,000 tonnes, where they peaked in 1978 (Morais 1981). Efforts were made to implement the commercial exploitation of this species for fishmeal, but fishing vessels geared for this fishery are limited in number. As this is a schooling species and is found in many fishery zones, it is regularly taken as by-catch. This, in addition to natural variability, is likely to be responsible for much of the decline seen in the biomass of this species in recent years. Considering the wide distribution and reported abundance of this species, the indirect harvest of this species is not considered a major threat at the present time.
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Least Concern (LC)
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
There are no species-specific conservation measures in place for Macroramphosus scolopax. Changes in net gear size used by the commercial fishing industry is not thought to be viable, as it could be accompanied by a significant loss in the catch of target species. The best solution as proposed by Fonseca et al. in their 2005 study, is to avoid dense schools of Macroramphosus scolopax. Commercial exploitation of this species was stopped in the 1980s after a significant decrease in abundance. Further research is needed on the biology and harvest levels of this species, to help distinguish between natural fluctuations in the population of this species, and fishery-related declines. Taxonomic research is also needed to determine the validity of Macroramphosus gracilis.
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Importance

fisheries: commercial; aquarium: public aquariums
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Wikipedia

Longspine snipefish

The longspine snipefish, bellowfish, common bellowsfish, snipe-fish, snipefish, spine trumpet fish, or trumpetfish, Macroramphosus scolopax, is a snipefish of the genus Macroramphosus. It is also known as the slender snipefish off the South African coast.[1]

Distribution[edit source | edit]

This fish is found worldwide in tropical to subtropical water[1] in the Atlantic, Indian, and west Pacific Oceans, at depths of 25 to 600 m (82 to 2,000 ft).

Description[edit source | edit]

Longspine snipefish are reddish pink dorsally but have silvery bellies. They have a large eye, long snouts and a slender spine protruding dorsally.[1]

Ecology[edit source | edit]

The longspine snipefish feeds on crustacean zooplankton such as copepods and ostracods, as well as benthic invertebrates.[1]


In the month-long NORFANZ Expedition of 2003 which examined the biodiversity of the seamounts and slopes of the Norfolk Ridge, 5000 specimens averaging 78 g (2.8 oz) were collected from three locations.[2]

References[edit source | edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Smith, M.M. and Heemstra, P.C. (eds.) 2003. Smiths' Sea Fishes ISBN 1-86872-890-0
  2. ^ NORFANZ Voyage Retrieved 2011-10-29.
  • Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2006). "Macroramphosus scolopax" in FishBase. May 2006 version.
  • Tony Ayling & Geoffrey Cox, Collins Guide to the Sea Fishes of New Zealand, (William Collins Publishers Ltd, Auckland, New Zealand 1982) ISBN 0-00-216987-8
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