Teleostei (teleosts) > Tetraodontiformes
(Puffers and filefishes) > Balistidae
Etymology: Melichthys: Greek, melas, melaina, melan, black + icthys yos, fish. On the other hand, in Smith et al.,1986: 878), 'body dark brown to black' in https://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/item/266635#page/902/mode/1up.(P. Romero, pers.comm. 03/2022)..
More on authors: Randall & Klausewitz.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 1 - 30 m (Ref. 9710). Tropical
Indian Ocean: Red Sea and East Africa eastward to western Thailand and Indonesia.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 25.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 4420)
Inhabits coral-rich seaward reef slopes (Ref. 9710, 48637). Occurs singly (Ref. 9710). Digs holes below coral bases for shelter (Ref. 48637). Feeds on sponges, algae, crustaceans and small invertebrates (Ref. 5503). Caught with artisanal gear (Ref. 30573). Minimum depth from Ref. 58018.
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Oviparous, distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205).
Smith, M.M. and P.C. Heemstra, 1986. Balistidae. p. 876-882. In M.M. Smith and P.C. Heemstra (eds.) Smiths' sea fishes. Springer-Verlag, Berlin. (Ref. 4420)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 126983)
Threat to humans
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 123201
): 25.4 - 29.3, mean 28.2 °C (based on 947 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82804
= 0.6250 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.02570 (0.01232 - 0.05364), b=2.94 (2.77 - 3.11), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.0 ±0.29 se; based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Fishing Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (15 of 100).
Nutrients (Ref. 124155
): Calcium = 55.1 [23.5, 127.1] mg/100g; Iron = 0.67 [0.35, 1.49] mg/100g; Protein = 18.2 [16.1, 20.4] %; Omega3 = 0.11 [0.06, 0.21] g/100g; Selenium = 31 [16, 65] μg/100g; VitaminA = 57.3 [16.4, 201.4] μg/100g; Zinc = 1.25 [0.85, 1.86] mg/100g (wet weight);