Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

  Common names: angelfish (English), muñeca (Espanol)
 
Holacanthus limbaughi Baldwin, 1963


Clipperton angelfish



Deep compressed body; a small mouth with brush-like teeth; preopercle with large spine at its angle, with vertical margin serrated; bone between preopercle and operculum with 1-4 large spines; bone under eye without large, rear-pointing spines;  a single, un- notched dorsal fin, XIV, 17-18;  anal rays III,17-18; dorsal and anal fins end in filaments; tail straight; lateral line weakly developed, ends under end of soft dorsal fin; large (45-48 in lateral series) regularly arranged, very rough scales with distinct ridges on the exposed part, scales extend out onto the median fins.



Blue-grey; whitish tail fin; a small (~ eye-sized) white spot on upper side above tip of pectoral fin; margins of dorsal, anal, and pelvic fins electric blue;  juveniles  grey-brown with about 7 narrow blue bars, including two on head.


Size: grows to at least 30 cm.

Habitat: coral reefs.

Depth: 2-100 m.

Known only from Clipperton Island.
   
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Distribution

Range Description

This little-known species is endemic to Clipperton Island (France) in the eastern Pacific Ocean. It is present nearshore at 6-10 m, but also occurs at deeper depths to 100 m (Baldwin 1963, Allen 1980). Clipperton Island has an estimated area of less than 10 km2, and less than 4 km2 of reef habitat.
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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, TEP oceanic island (s) endemic, Clipperton Island endemic, Island (s), Island (s) only

Residency: Resident

Climate Zone: Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
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Eastern Pacific: known only from Clipperton Island, 2560 km due west of Costa Rica.
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Eastern Pacific.
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Depth

Depth Range (m): 2 (S) - 100 (S)
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Physical Description

Morphology

Size

Length max (cm): 30.0 (S)
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Size

Maximum size: 250 mm ---
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Max. size

25.0 cm TL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 4858))
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Type Information

Holotype for Holacanthus limbaughi
Catalog Number: USNM 178998
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Collector(s): C. Limbaugh, W. Baldwin & Party
Year Collected: 1956
Locality: Clipperton Island,Northwest Shore., Clipperton Island, Pacific
  • Holotype:
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
There appears to be little information other than it has been collected at a coral atoll locality (Clipperton Island).

Systems
  • Marine
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Environment

reef-associated; non-migratory; marine
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Salinity: Marine, Marine Only

Inshore/Offshore: Inshore, Inshore Only

Water Column Position: Mid Water, Near Bottom, Bottom, Bottom + water column

Habitat: Reef (rock &/or coral), Reef only, Corals, Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)

FishBase Habitat: Reef Associated
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Trophic Strategy

Feeding

Feeding Group: Planktivore, Omnivore

Diet: benthic microalgae, sponges/seasquirts/bryozoa, sessile crustacea, sessile worms, sessile molluscs, zooplankton, pelagic fish eggs
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Life History and Behavior

Reproduction

Egg Type: Pelagic, Pelagic larva
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Holacanthus limbaughi

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 7
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
NT
Near Threatened

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2010

Assessor/s
Craig, M.T., Pyle, R. & Rocha, L.A.

Reviewer/s
Elfes, C., Polidoro, B., Livingstone, S. & Carpenter, K.E.

Contributor/s

Justification
This species has a highly restricted distribution with the entirety of its population confined to reef habitat in a single location (Clipperton Atoll), with an extent of occurrence estimated to be less than 10 km2. Regional experts support the plausible threat of the increased duration and frequency of ENSO events that can cause severe and rapid declines for restricted-range, shallow-water species in this region of the Eastern Tropical Pacific. Because it is found in deeper water and therefore is not expected to decline as quickly as more shallow-water species, it is listed as Near Threatened under Criterion D2.
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IUCN Red List: Not evaluated / Listed

CITES: Not listed
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Population

Population
Baldwin (1963) reports that it was fairly common close to shore. According to Robertson and Allen (1996), this fish is commonly seen and locally abundant at Clipperton Island.

Population Trend
Stable
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Threats

Major Threats

This species has a highly restricted distribution with the entirety of its population confined to reef habitat in the Clipperton Atoll,with an area of occupancy estimated to be less than <10 km2. In the Eastern Tropical Pacific, severe localized fish species declines have occurred after strong ENSO events that result in shallow waters that are too warm and nutrient poor for extended periods of time (Grove 1985, Edgar et al. 2009). The frequency and duration of ENSO events in this region of the Eastern Tropical Pacific (e.g., the up-welling zone off the coast of Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama and the offshore islands) appears to be increasing (Glynn and Ault 2000, Soto 2001, Chen et al. 2004). Given this species restricted distribution, oceanographic environmental changes, such as those associated with future ENSO events, may have detrimental effects on the survival of this species. However, this species is found in deeper waters and declines for this species may not be as severe as for other more shallow-water species.

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Near Threatened (NT)
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions

There do not appear to be conservation measures in place for this species. The species does not appear to have been recorded from any marine protected areas. This species should be carefully monitored, given its restricted range and reef-restricted habitat.

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