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Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

  Common names: remora (English), suckerfish (English), rémora (Espanol)
 
Remorina albescens (Temminck & Schlegel, 1850)

White suckerfish,     White remora



Moderately elongate; sucking disc on head medium length, reaches ~to tips of pectorals, with 12-14 plates; lower gill rakers ~10, including rudiments; pectoral broad, rounded 18-21 rays; dorsal with short base, 15-22 rays; anal base ~ head length, 20-26 rays; tail bluntly straight (forked in juvenile); pelvics small, blunt, narrowly joined to belly by membrane .


Uniform pale grey to white.

Size: 35 cm.

Habitat: hosts are manta rays, sharks and marlin.

Depth: 0-50 m?

Circumtropical; throughout our region except for the upper Gulf of California.   
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Biology

Host specific on manta rays, but occasionally attaches to sharks. Often occurs inside gill chamber and mouth of host. Also attaches itself to black marlin, Makaira indica, of the Indo-Pacific Region (Ref. 7251). Rarely free-swimming (Ref. 10791). Used in Chinese medicine (Ref. 12166).
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Distribution

Range Description

Remorina albescens is widely distributed in tropical waters. In the Eastern Pacific area it is found from San Francisco to Chile, but it is rare north of the state of Baja California in Mexico. It is found in the Indian Ocean including waters around Reunion and Mauritius. In the western Atlantic it is found from Florida to Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico. It is also found in the Western Pacific Ocean around Indonesia and China.
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Zoogeography

See Map (including site records) of Distribution in the Tropical Eastern Pacific 
 
Global Endemism: All species, TEP non-endemic, Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans), "Transpacific" (East + Central &/or West Pacific), East Pacific + Atlantic (East +/or West), Transisthmian (East Pacific + Atlantic of Central America), East Pacific + all Atlantic (East+West)

Regional Endemism: All species, Eastern Pacific non-endemic, Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) non-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), South Temperate (Peruvian Province )
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Worldwide in warm seas. Western Indian Ocean: including Reunion and Mauritius (Ref. 33390). Eastern Pacific: off San Francisco in California, USA to Chile, but rare north of Baja California in Mexico. Western Atlantic: Florida in USA and Gulf of Mexico to Brazil (Ref. 7251). Eastern Central Atlantic: St. Paul's Rocks (Ref. 13121).
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Circumglobal in tropical and subtropical seas, including Red Sea, Hawaiian Islands.
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Depth

Depth Range (m): 0 (F) - 50 (F)
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Physical Description

Morphology

Dorsal spines (total): 0; Dorsal soft rays (total): 17 - 22; Analspines: 0; Analsoft rays: 21 - 26
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Size

Length max (cm): 35.0 (S)
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Size

Maximum size: 300 mm SL
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Max. size

30.0 cm SL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 5288))
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Diagnostic Description

Pale grey to white in color.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Remorina albescens attaches itself to other species by a cephalic sucking disk on its head. Ninety percent of individuals are found on Manta Rays, but are also associated with 4 other hosts (O'Toole 2002). It is often found inside the gill chambers and mouth of its host. This species is found to a depth of 50 m.

Systems
  • Marine
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Environment

pelagic-oceanic; oceanodromous (Ref. 51243); marine
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Depth range based on 1 specimen in 1 taxon.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 58 - 58
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

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Salinity: Marine, Marine Only

Inshore/Offshore: Offshore Only, Offshore

Water Column Position: Near Surface, Mid Water, Water column only

Habitat: Water column, Large fishes (billfishes, rays, sharks, etc), turtles & whales

FishBase Habitat: Pelagic
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Migration

Oceanodromous. Migrating within oceans typically between spawning and different feeding areas, as tunas do. Migrations should be cyclical and predictable and cover more than 100 km.
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Trophic Strategy

Rarely free-swimming (Ref. 10791).
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Feeding

Feeding Group: Carnivore, Ectoparasite cleaner

Diet: Pelagic crustacea, zooplankton, pelagic fish eggs, pelagic fish larvae, ectoparasites, bony fishes
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Life History and Behavior

Reproduction

Egg Type: Pelagic, Pelagic larva
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Remora albescens

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


No available public DNA sequences.

Download FASTA File
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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Remora albescens

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 1
Specimens with Barcodes: 4
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
Carpenter, K. & Collette, B.B.

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

This species is listed as Least Concern. It is common and widely distributed globally. There are no known specific threats to the species, but may be affected by threats directed at manta rays, the host species.

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IUCN Red List: Not evaluated / Listed

CITES: Not listed
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Population

Population
There is no population information available for Remorina albescens.

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
This species is used within Traditional Chinese Medicine, however there is no indication that this is causing a decline in the population. It's association with Manta Rays may result in future population declines should Manta Rays continue to be impacted by anthropogenic pressures.
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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 Remorina albescens. However, the distribution of this species may fall within a number of marine protected areas.
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Wikipedia

White suckerfish

The white suckerfish or mantasucker, Remora albescens, is a species of remora in the family Echeneidae, a group of elongated marine fish with adhesive discs for attaching to larger organisms. The distribution of this species is worldwide in warm open seas: it is found in the western Indian Ocean including Réunion and Mauritius, in the eastern Pacific Ocean from San Francisco to Chile (but is rare north of Baja California), and in the western and eastern central Atlantic Ocean from Florida and the Gulf of Mexico to Brazil and St. Paul's Rocks.[2]

The white suckerfish can reach 30 cm (12 in) in standard length. The adhesive disk is short and wide, the length 34-40% and the width 22-26% of the standard length, with 13-14 lamellae. The pelvic fins are placed far forward and narrowly attached to the abdomen; the dorsal, anal, and pectoral fins are short with reduced rays. The dorsal fin rays number 18-23, the anal fin rays 18-24, and the pectoral fin rays 18-21. The dentition is specialized, consisting of many large, stout canine teeth set in large patches in broad jaws. The head, body, and fins are colored light brown, light tan, or light grey to whitish.[3] Three documented specimens from the Gulf of Mexico show considerable variation in color pattern, from uniform grey or pale bluish-white to light grey, darkening on the sides and belly and bearing numerous elongated spots. One living specimen immediately darkened in color when it was removed from sea water and lightened when it was returned.[4]

White suckerfish are rarely found free-swimming; they are host-specific to manta rays, and enter their host's mouth and gill chamber more often than any other remora. They are also occasionally found attached to sharks, and in the Indo-Pacific region to black marlin.[2] Unlike some other remora species, parasitic copepods comprise a negligible part of the diet of the white suckerfish, suggesting it may not have a mutualistic relationship with its host.[5] The white suckerfish responds to a touch on its belly by forcefully erecting its pelvic fins, possibly an adaptation to avoid crushing by its host.[4] Nothing is known about their reproduction.[3] It is used in Chinese medicine.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Carpenter, K. & Collette, B.B. 2010. Remorina albescens. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 01 July 2013.
  2. ^ a b c Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2013). "Remora albescens" in FishBase. April 2013 version.
  3. ^ a b Lachner, E.A. (1986). "Echeneididae". In Whitehead, P.J.P, et al.. Fishes of the North-eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean. Paris: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. ISBN 92-3-002309-4. 
  4. ^ a b von Schmidt, K. (Mar 6, 1969). "Remorina albescens in the Gulf of Mexico, with a Note on Pigmentation". Copeia 1969 (1): 194–195. doi:10.2307/1441716. JSTOR 1441716. 
  5. ^ Cressey, R.F. and Lachner, E.A. (Jun 1, 1970). "The Parasitic Copepod Diet and Life History of Diskfishes (Echeneidae)". Copeia 1970 (2): 310–318. doi:10.2307/1441652. JSTOR 1441652. 
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