Overview

Comprehensive Description

Biology

Benthic in lower and middle reaches of streams (Ref. 58302). Adults inhabit mountainous streams. Are well adapted to exist in swiftly-flowing basalt-bottomed stream habitat (Ref. 26461). Presence of these species signify water of good water quality (Ref. 44091). Adults are primarily herbivorous, scraping algae off rocks, while the larvae are omnivorous; occasionally caught with nets ('upena), usually after being stupefied with native plants (e.g. hola and ahuhu), a process requiring partial diversion of the stream to reduce water flow; particularly prized in July and August when the females are gravid (Ref. 44091).
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Distribution

endemic to a single state or province

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National Distribution

United States

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Year-round

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Global Range: Hawaiian Islands; Hawaii, Molokai, Maui, Oahu, and Kauai.

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Oceania: found in larger Hawaiian Islands and Society Islands.
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Hawaiian Islands.
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Physical Description

Size

Max. size

19.8 cm SL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 26461))
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Diagnostic Description

Mature males characterized by an extended ray on the first dorsal fin which is very long and overlaps the second dorsal fin when folded; courting male can appear turquoise to nearly black, with two "racing" stripes along the length of the body; females and juveniles normally mottled brown to gray-green; both sexes turn black when disturbed (Ref. 44091).
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Type Information

Holotype for Vitraria clarescens Jordan & Evermann
Catalog Number: USNM 50655
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Preparation: Radiograph
Collector(s): D. Jordan & B. Evermann
Locality: Hilo,, Hawaii, United States, Hawaiian Islands, Pacific
  • Holotype: Jordan, D. S. & Evermann, B. W. 1903. Bulletin of the United States Fish Commission. 22 (for 1902): 205.
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Paratype for Vitraria clarescens Jordan & Evermann
Catalog Number: USNM 126696
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Collector(s): D. Jordan & B. Evermann
Year Collected: 1901
Locality: Hawaii, Hilo, Hawaii, United States, Hawaiian Islands, Pacific
  • Paratype: Jordan, D. S. & Evermann, B. W. 1903. Bulletin of the United States Fish Commission. 22 (for 1902): 205.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat Type: Freshwater

Comments: A riverine species.

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Habitat and Ecology

Systems
  • Freshwater
  • Marine
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Environment

demersal; amphidromous (Ref. 51243); freshwater; brackish; marine; depth range 1 - 300 m (Ref. 58302)
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Migration

Non-Migrant: No. All populations of this species make significant seasonal migrations.

Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make local extended movements (generally less than 200 km) at particular times of the year (e.g., to breeding or wintering grounds, to hibernation sites).

Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make annual migrations of over 200 km.

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Amphidromous. Refers to fishes that regularly migrate between freshwater and the sea (in both directions), but not for the purpose of breeding, as in anadromous and catadromous species. Sub-division of diadromous. Migrations should be cyclical and predictable and cover more than 100 km.Characteristic elements in amphidromy are: reproduction in fresh water, passage to sea by newly hatched larvae, a period of feeding and growing at sea usually a few months long, return to fresh water of well-grown juveniles, a further period of feeding and growing in fresh water, followed by reproduction there (Ref. 82692).
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Trophic Strategy

Comments: Eats diatoms and cyanobacteria (blue-green algae).

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Is well adapted to exist in swiftly-flowing basalt-bottomed stream habitat (Ref. 26461).
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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: N2 - Imperiled

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G2 - Imperiled

Reasons: Occurs in the Hawaiian Islands.

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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LR/nt
Lower Risk/near threatened

Red List Criteria

Version
2.3

Year Assessed
1996
  • Needs updating

Assessor/s
World Conservation Monitoring Centre

Reviewer/s

Contributor/s

History
  • 1996
    Lower Risk/near threatened
    (Baillie and Groombridge 1996)
  • 1994
    Rare
    (Groombridge 1994)
  • 1990
    Rare
    (IUCN 1990)
  • 1988
    Rare
    (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1988)
  • 1986
    Rare
    (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1986)
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Threats

Lower Risk: near threatened (LR/nt)
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Wikipedia

Sicyopterus stimpsoni

Sicyopterus stimpsoni, commonly known as the Nopoli rockclimbing goby, oopu nopili, or Stimpson's goby, is a species of amphidromous goby endemic to Hawaii. This species can reach a length of 19.8 centimetres (7.8 in) SL.[2]

Ecology[edit]

Juveniles move from saltwater to freshwater streams shortly before changes in the anatomy of their mouths make eating plankton impossible. Their dietary behaviour depends critically on the benthic algal cycle, which is locked into the hydrological cycles of the island streams. [3]

The species in its adult form is found in the upper parts of clear, fast-running mountain streams, where there is clean gravel and rocks with no sedimentation, allowing the growth of algae on rock surfaces. It is found on all the Hawaiian islands, although it has become rare on O‘ahu. The species is herbivorous, feeding only on diatoms and filamentous algae, and vigorously defending its feeding patch. The males display brilliant blue and red colours during the breeding season, colours which change with the mood of the fish. The females attach their eggs to rocks where they are fertilised by the males, and the hatchlings are immediately washed downstream into the sea, where they develop, later to return to the freshwater pools upstream, where they live for several years. To arrive at these pools the juveniles need to climb the vertical rock under and beside very high waterfalls. The climbing is postponed until their mouthparts have moved from a forward-facing position to under the body. This change is effected in two days, altering their diet from that of an omnivore to feeding almost exclusively on algae growing on the rock surfaces, and not coincidentally enabling them to ascend slippery waterfall rocks by using mouth and pelvic suckers.

It is preyed upon by Black-crowned Night Herons and during its upstream migration through the estuary by Caranx spp., Polydactylus sexfilis and Sphyraena barracuda.[4]

Conservation[edit]

Five of the seven native freshwater fish species on Hawaii are gobioid.[5] Three of these gobioids, S. stimpsoni (this article), Awaous guamensis (non-endemic) and Lentipes concolor (endemic) are amphidromous stream dwellers, which are adapted to the steep torrents of Hawaii's mountains (Eleotris sandwicensis and Stenogobius hawaiiensis, both endemic, are unable to pass steep torrents).[6] This makes them extremely sensitive to habitat disturbance.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ World Conservation Monitoring Centre 1996. Sicyopterus stimpsoni. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.1. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 26 September 2013.
  2. ^ Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2013). "Sicyopterus stimpsoni" in FishBase. June 2013 version.
  3. ^ Julius, M. L.; Blob, R. W.; Schoenfuss, H. L. (2005). "The survival of Sicyopterus stimpsoni, an endemic amphidromous Hawaiian gobiid fish, relies on the hydrological cycles of streams: Evidence from changes in algal composition of diet through growth stages fish". Aquatic Ecology 39 (4): 473. doi:10.1007/s10452-005-9007-1.  edit
  4. ^ "Sicyopterus stimpsoni". Hawaii Biological Survey, Bishop Museum. Retrieved February 28, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Nicolette Craig (May 18, 2011). "The amazing rock-climbing gobies". Practical Fishkeeping. Retrieved February 28, 2012. 
  6. ^ Fitzsimons, J. M.; and McRae, M. G. (2007) Behavioral Ecology of Indigenous Stream Fishes in Hawai‘i. Environmental Studies 3: 11–21.
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Names and Taxonomy

Taxonomy

Comments: Zink et al. (1996) examined mtDNA restriction site variation among populations on the five high islands of the Hawaiian archipelago and found no geographic structuring of haplotypes, evidently a result of gene flow via larval dispersal.

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