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Overview

Comprehensive Description

Biology

Occurs in lagoon and seaward reefs. Juveniles generally solitary; large adults often school together.
  • Parenti, P. and J.E. Randall 2000 An annotated checklist of the species of the labroid fish families Labridae and Scaridae. Ichthyol. Bull. J.L.B. Smith Inst. Ichthyol. (68):1-97. (Ref. 35918)
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Distribution

Range Description

This species is found in the Ryukyu and Ogasawara Islands to Indonesia and Australia, Lord Howe Island and New Caledonia, and eastwards to Oceania (except Hawaiian Islands and Easter Island) (G. Allen pers comm. 2009). In the southerm hemisphere it extends south of coral reef formations. It is not found in Cocos Keeling Islands.
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Indo-West Pacific.
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Pacific Ocean: Bali and the Philippines to the Line and Pitcairn islands, north to the Ryukyu Islands, south to Rottnest Island, Lord Howe Island and Rapa Island (Ref. 37816). The species complex comprise of Chlorurus gibbus in the Red Sea, Chlorurus strongylocephalus in the Indian Ocean and Chlorurus microrhinos in the west-central Pacific.
  • Parenti, P. and J.E. Randall 2000 An annotated checklist of the species of the labroid fish families Labridae and Scaridae. Ichthyol. Bull. J.L.B. Smith Inst. Ichthyol. (68):1-97. (Ref. 35918)
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Physical Description

Morphology

Dorsal spines (total): 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 10; Analspines: 3; Analsoft rays: 9
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Size

Maximum size: 700 mm TL
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Max. size

70.0 cm TL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 2334)); max. published weight: 5,400 g (Ref. 37816)
  • Myers, R.F. 1999 Micronesian reef fishes: a comprehensive guide to the coral reef fishes of Micronesia, 3rd revised and expanded edition. Coral Graphics, Barrigada, Guam. 330 p. (Ref. 37816)
  • Randall, J.E., G.R. Allen and R.C. Steene 1990 Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, Hawaii. 506 p. (Ref. 2334)
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Diagnostic Description

Juveniles below about 8 cm are black with several horizontal white streaks. Larger ones up to about 20 cm uniformly dark, greenish brown, slowly becoming blue with age. Blue streak and patch extending behind the corner of the mouth of large males often quite brilliant. Uniformly yellowish-tan individuals rare. Caudal fin lunate in large terminal males. Scale rows on cheek 3. Median predorsal scales 3-4 (Ref. 37816). Males develop large hump on head and appear blunt-headed (Ref. 48636).
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Type Information

Paratype for Chlorurus microrhinos
Catalog Number: USNM 114645
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Preparation: Unknown
Locality: Samoa, American Samoa or Samoa, Samoa Islands, Pacific
  • Paratype: Jordan, D. S. & Seale, A. 1906. Occasional Papers of the Bernice P. Bishop Museum. 4 (1): 63.
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Paratype for Chlorurus microrhinos
Catalog Number: USNM 51838
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Collector(s): D. Jordan & V. Kellogg
Year Collected: 1902
Locality: Samoa, Apia., Upolu, Samoa, Samoa Islands, Pacific
  • Paratype: Jordan, D. S. & Seale, A. 1906. Occasional Papers of the Bernice P. Bishop Museum. 4 (1): 63.
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Paratype for Chlorurus microrhinos
Catalog Number: USNM 51835
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Collector(s): D. Jordan & V. Kellogg
Year Collected: 1902
Locality: American Samoa: Tutuila Island, Pago Pago, Tutuila, American Samoa, Samoa Islands, Pacific
  • Paratype: Jordan, D. S. & Seale, A. 1906. Occasional Papers of the Bernice P. Bishop Museum. 4 (1): 63.
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Type for Chlorurus microrhinos
Catalog Number: USNM 51757
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Preparation: Illustration
Collector(s): D. Jordan & V. Kellogg
Year Collected: 1902
Locality: American Samoa: Tutuila Island, Pago Pago, Tutuila, American Samoa, Samoa Islands, Pacific
  • Type: Jordan, D. S. & Seale, A. 1906. Occasional Papers of the Bernice P. Bishop Museum. 4 (1): 63.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
This is a large excavating parrotfishes reaching 80 cm (TL) and forming schools of up to 40 individuals on reef fronts and crests. It is a rapidly growing species with maximum age of 15 yrs (identified as C. gibbus) (Choat et al. 1996). It is found in a wide range of habitats from inshore reefs to exposed oceanic reef fronts (Russ 1984).

Systems
  • Marine
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Environment

reef-associated; marine; depth range 1 - 50 m (Ref. 90102)
  • Allen, G.R. and M.V. Erdmann 2012 Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth, Australia: Universitiy of Hawai'i Press, Volumes I-III. Tropical Reef Research. (Ref. 90102)
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Depth: 2 - 35m.
From 2 to 35 meters.

Habitat: reef-associated.
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Depth range based on 9 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 6 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 6.405 - 39
  Temperature range (°C): 27.515 - 28.897
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.068 - 0.678
  Salinity (PPS): 34.171 - 36.142
  Oxygen (ml/l): 4.509 - 4.622
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.108 - 0.301
  Silicate (umol/l): 1.280 - 3.868

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 6.405 - 39

Temperature range (°C): 27.515 - 28.897

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.068 - 0.678

Salinity (PPS): 34.171 - 36.142

Oxygen (ml/l): 4.509 - 4.622

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.108 - 0.301

Silicate (umol/l): 1.280 - 3.868
 
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Trophic Strategy

Occurs inshore (Ref. 75154).
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Chlorurus microrhinos

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 3
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
2012

Assessor/s
Choat, J.H., Carpenter, K.E., Clements, K.D., Rocha, L.A., Russell, B., Myers, R., Lazuardi, M.E., Muljadi, A., Pardede, S. & Rahardjo, P.

Reviewer/s
McIlwain, J. & Craig, M.T.

Contributor/s

Justification
Although this species is heavily exploited at least half of its range, it is one of the most widespread parrotfishes. It is not subject to any form of exploitation in the southern limits of its distribution, and occurs in remote oceanic environments with no human habitation. It is the most abundant large parrotfish in Great Barrier Reef Marine and Western Australia marine parks. It occurs in a number of marine protected areas in parts of its range. It is therefore listed as Least Concern.

History
  • 2010
    Least Concern
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Population

Population
This species is one of the more abundant and widely distributed Indo-Pacific parrotfishes. It is moderately common especially at the southern limits of its range. This species is rare in the Philippines and is not commonly found in markets in the Coral Triangle region. There have been abundance declines in Indonesia but elsewhere it is locally abundant. It is unknown if its rarity in markets in the Coral Triangle is due to past overfishing or a natural phenomenon.

This species shows substantial changes in abundance over its distributional range. Numbers are mean abundance per 1,000 m2:

Great Barrier Reef: 9-12
Middleton reef: 3-13
Coral Sea reefs: 17-2.3
West Australia (Rowley Shoals): 2.3
Kavieng, Papua New Guinea: 1.7
Samoa: 0.9
Tuvalu: 5.5.

This species is heavily fished in Pacific Islands eg: Samoa but at Tuvalu this species is inedible due to ciguatera. The Great Barrier Reef has naturally very high densities 9-12 as opposed to the West Australia reefs at 2-3. Both areas sampled are marine reserves. High abundances are recorded at the southern limit of coral reef formation (Middleton Reef). Both fishing and natural processes modify abundances in C. microrhinos (J.H. Choat pers comm. 2009).

Indonesia

Abundance data from 2005-2007 showed a decrease from 800 individuals per hectare to 80 individuals per hectare (S. Pardede pers comm. 2009).

Underwater fish visual census in Kofiau, Raja Ampat in April 2009 recorded biomass estimates of 2,000 kg per hectare (M.E. Lazuardi and A. Muljadi pers comm. 2009). It is moderately common in Raja Ampat (Allen 2003).

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
As a large parrotfish, this species is targeted for food in at least half of its range. It is also commonly taken by spearfishing at night and also during daytime including the Great Barrier Reef. It is heavily fished at some locations in Guam with declines of 86% in numbers landed since 1985 (Division of Aquatic and Wildlife Resources unpub. data). It is present in most markets observed including Palau and the Society Islands where it is heavily targeted in the Tuamotos. Fishing pressure is increasing in parts of its range such as in the Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea (J.H. Choat pers comm. 2009). Destructive fishing practices and habitat destruction are prevalent in parts of its range (Indonesia, Malaysia, and Philippines).

Parrotfishes show varying degrees of habitat preference and utilization of coral reef habitats, with some species spending the majority of their life stages on coral reefs, while others primarily utilize seagrass beds, mangroves, algal beds, and /or rocky reefs. Although the majority of the parrotfishes occur in mixed habitat (primarily inhabiting seagrass beds, mangroves, and rocky reefs) approximately 78% of these mixed habitat species are experiencing greater than 30% loss of coral reef area and habitat quality across their distributions. Of those species that occur exclusively in coral reef habitat, more than 80% are experiencing a greater than 30% of coral reef loss and degradation across their distributions. However, more research is needed to understand the long-term effects of habitat loss and degradation on these species populations. Widespread coral reef loss and declining habitat conditions are particularly worrying for species that depend on live coral reefs for food and shelter especially as studies have shown that protection of pristine habitats facilitate the persistence of adult populations in species that have spatially separated adult and juvenile habitats. Furthermore, coral reef loss and declining habitat conditions are particularly worrying for some corallivorous excavating parrotfishes that play major roles in reef dynamics and sedimentation (Comeros-Raynal et al. 2012).
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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 this species. However, its distribution overlaps several marine protected areas within its range. In Samoa, night spearfishing using SCUBA has been banned.
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Wikipedia

Chlorurus microrhinos

Chlorurus microrhinos, the blunt-head parrotfish, is a member of the family Labridae. This species can be found in many different habitats, including inshore reefs and ocean reef fronts.[2] It usually grows to be about 80 cm (31.49 in) long. This species swims in schools of about 40 fish.[2]

This species inhabits lagoon and seaward reefs from 2 to 35 m. At Guam, large individuals are seldom seen in shallow water, but in the underexploited northern Marianas, it is one of the most abundant reef-front parrotfishes. This species does not undergo as radical a color change with growth as do other scarids, but large males develop the prominent forehead of many scarids and may be slightly toxic at some Pacific localities. Some geographic variation exists between Red Sea, Western Indian Ocean, and Pacific populations, and an unusual reddish-tan phase occurs in the central Pacific.[3]

References[edit]

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