Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Labridae
(Wrasses) > Cheilininae
Etymology: Cheilinus: Greek, cheilos = lip (Ref. 45335).
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 4 - 60 m (Ref. 9823), usually 4 - 40 m (Ref. 27115). Tropical; 23°C - 27°C (Ref. 27115); 32°N - 36°S, 24°E - 170°W
Indo-Pacific: Red Sea and East Africa to Micronesia and Samoa, north to the Ryukyu Islands (Ref. 1602).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 40.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9823)
soft rays: 8. This species is distinguished by the following characters: body moderately deep, its depth 2.35 to 2.6 times in standard length; dorsal profile of head convex; anterior tip of snout forming an acute angle; jaws prominent, especially lower jaw in large individuals; strong canines 2, situated anteriorly in each jaw; no enlarged tooth present on rear of upper jaw; D IX,10, continuous with spines and anterior soft rays of similar length; A III, 8; pectoral fins with ii unbranched and 10 branched rays; pelvic fins short, not reaching anus; caudal fin rounded in juveniles, the upper and lower rays forming elongate lobes in large individuals, giving the fin a trilobed appearance. Lateral line interrupted below posterior portion of dorsal-fin base, with a total of 22-23 pored scales; scales reaching well onto bases of dorsal and anal fins; scales in front of dorsal fin extending forward to above anterior portion of eye; cheek and opercle scaly; lower jaw without scales. Colour of fish with alternating dark (brown to black) and light (yellow to white) vertical bars on body from opercle to caudal fin, 6 dark bars usually broader than 6 light ones, particularly in large individuals; scales with a vertical black streak; breast, pectoral-fin bases, and often anterior sides red; a light yellow-orange area in pectoral region; the small individuals are similarly marked, but often with less red colour and wider pale bars (Ref. 9823).
Adults inhabit lagoon and seaward reefs, usually in areas with mixed coral, sand, and rubble (Ref. 9710). Young common on silty reefs, usually along edges with algae-rubble and sand (Ref. 48636). Feed mainly on benthic, hard-shelled invertebrates, including mollusks, crustaceans and sea urchins (Ref. 5374). Oviparous, distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205). Caught on hook-and-line with some frequency, this species is marketed in small numbers. Occasionally seen in the aquarium trade (Ref. 9823).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Oviparous, distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205).
Westneat, M.W., 2001. Labridae. Wrasses, hogfishes, razorfishes, corises, tuskfishes. p. 3381-3467. In K.E. Carpenter and V. Niem (eds.) FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes. The living marine resources of the Western Central Pacific. Vol. 6. Bony fishes part 4 (Labridae to Latimeriidae), estuarine crocodiles. FAO, Rome. (Ref. 9823)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 119314)
CITES (Ref. 115941)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: minor commercial; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 24.7 - 29, mean 28 (based on 1620 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5078 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01413 (0.00718 - 0.02780), b=2.95 (2.78 - 3.12), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 3.4 ±0.40 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate to high vulnerability (52 of 100) .