Comprehensive DescriptionRead full entry
| Common names: surgeonfish (English), cirujano (Espanol), navajón (Espanol) |
Acanthurus guttatus Forster, 1801
Body an elongate oval; head profile steep; eye high on the head; mouth small, protrusible, low on head; teeth on jaws fixed, with flattened, notched tips, 8-28 on each jaw; gill rakers 21-24; dorsal rays IX, 27-30; anal rays III, 23-26; pectoral rays 15-17; pelvic fin I, 5; a single depressible spine fits into a groove on the side of the base of the tail; tail fin concave; scales very small, rough; lateral line complete.
Head, body and dorsal and anal fins dark grey brown; a white bar on head behind eye and another on body just behind pectoral base; dorsal, anal and body behind second bar with many small white spots; pelvic fins bright yellow; tail fin pale yellow with a broad black rear edge.
Reaches 26 cm
Habitat: Restricted to shallow surgy areas of seaward reef environments.
Depth range: 0-10 m
Widely distributed throughout the tropical Indo-central Pacific but, in the tropical eastern Pacific is known only from Clipperton. The first record of this species in the Tropical Eastern Pacific was made by Philippe Bearez and Bernard Séret (during the Jean-Louis Etienne Expedition), who observed three large adults, and collected one of them, during March, 2005. Since only a few similar-sized individuals were seen this species is probably present as a vagrant. This conspicuous, readily recognizable species was not observed at Clipperton during expeditions there in 1994 and 1998 by DR Robertson.