Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Acanthuridae
(Surgeonfishes, tangs, unicornfishes) > Acanthurinae
Etymology: Acanthurus: Greek, akantha = thorn + Greek, oura = tail (Ref. 45335). More on author: Randall.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 1 - 20 m (Ref. 90102). Tropical; 20°N - 25°S, 35°E - 172°W
Western Indian Ocean: Mozambique (Ref. 41878). Indo-West Pacific: Seychelles (Ref. 10685), Philippines, Indonesia and Great Barrier Reef; recently found in Maldives. Reported from Malaysia (Ref. 5756) and Samoa (Ref. 592).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 45.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 48637); max. reported age: 30 years (Ref. 52229)
soft rays: 23 - 24. Color in life dark brown; orange brown from pectoral base downward; caudal spine socket bright orange; orange blotch before and behind pupil; caudal fin base with a white band. Anterior gill rakers 20-23, posterior 24-28. Large caudal spine, 2.2 - 4.4 in head.
Adults inhabit shallow reefs, both in lagoons and outer reef areas. They frequently move in groups. Juveniles found between soft corals in lagoons at depths of up to 2 m (Ref. 9710, 48637). Adults in groups, often mixed with other similar species (Ref. 48637).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Randall, J.E., 1956. A revision of the surgeonfish genus Acanthurus. Pac. Sci. 10(2):159-235. (Ref. 1920)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 120744)
CITES (Ref. 115941)
Threat to humans
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningSpawning aggregationFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 25.6 - 29.3, mean 28.5 (based on 2408 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.02344 (0.01103 - 0.04981), b=2.96 (2.79 - 3.13), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (tmax=30; K=0.67).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (26 of 100) .