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Cephalopholis urodeta

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA ACTINOPTERYGII PERCIFORMES EPINEPHELIDAE

Scientific Name: Cephalopholis urodeta
Species Authority: (Forster, 1801)
Common Name(s):
English Darkfin Hind, Flag-tailed Rockcod, Blackfin Cod, Brown-finned Rock-cod, Banded-tail Coral-cod, Duskyfin Rockcod, Flagtail Cod, Flag-tailed Grouper, Black-finange Rock Cod, Flag-tailed Rock-cod, Flagtail Grouper, Flagtail Rockcod, Flag-tail Rock Cod
French Cuisinier, Merou Tachete A Queue Noire, Vieille Aile Noire
Spanish Cherna Alinegra
Synonym(s):
Cephalopholis urodela (Valenciennes, 1828)
Cephalopholis urudelus (Valenciennes, 1828)
Epinephelus erythaeus (Valenciennes, 1830)
Epinephelus playfairi Bleeker, 1879
Epinephelus playfayri Bleeker, 1879
Epinephelus urudelus (Valencienes, 1828)
Perca urodeta Forster, 1844
Perca urodeta Forster, 1801
Serranus erythraeus Valenciennes, 1830
Serranus mars De Vis, 1884
Serranus mauritiae Gudger, 1829
Serranus urodelus Valenciennes, 1828
Taxonomic Notes: Previously considered to be a widespread species in the Indian Ocean; the Indian Ocean form has now been shown to be Cephalopholis nigripinnis (Craig and Hastings 2007) (Heemstra, pers. comm.).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-01-01
Assessor(s): Liu, M., Yeeting, B., Russell, B., Craig, M.T., Heemstra, P.C. & Pollard, D.
Reviewer(s): Sadovy, Y. & Moss, K. (Grouper and Wrasse Red List Authority)
Justification:
Cephelopholis urodeta is listed as Least Concern because it is a widespread and not known to be in serious decline at present; however, it is sensitive to habitat degradation and may become threatened in the future.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: General
Cephalopholis urodeta is widely distributed within the Pacific Ocean, occurring eastward to French Polynesia and the Pitcairn Islands, and on Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean.

Recent records
There are recent new records of darkfin hind from Howland Island, Baker Island, Jarvis Island, Palmyra Atoll, and Kingman Reef (B. Mundy pers. comm.) and from Brunei (A. Conish, pers. comm.).

Introductions
C. urodeta was introduced into Hawaii in 1958-1961, but it did not become established there (Randall 1987).

Specific localities
Calamianes Islands; Davao Gulf; Coral Sea; Great Barrier Reef; Hsiao-liu-chiu; Indonesian Sea; Kimbe Bay; Kuroshio current; Lagonoy Gulf; Lingyen Gulf, Milne Bay; north northeast and northwest Australian Shelves; Panay Gulf; Peng-hu; Polynesian waters; Ragay Gulf; South China Sea; Spratly Islands; Sulu-Celebes Sea; Tubbataha Reefs; and Verde Island Passage.
Countries:
Native:
American Samoa (American Samoa); Australia; Brunei Darussalam; China; Christmas Island; Cocos (Keeling) Islands; Cook Islands; Fiji; French Polynesia; Guadeloupe; Hong Kong; Indonesia; Japan; Kiribati; Malaysia; Marshall Islands; Micronesia, Federated States of ; Nauru; New Caledonia; Niue; Northern Mariana Islands; Palau; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; Pitcairn; Samoa; Solomon Islands; Taiwan, Province of China; Tokelau; Tonga; Tuvalu; United States Minor Outlying Islands; Vanuatu; Viet Nam; Wallis and Futuna
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Indian Ocean – eastern; Pacific – northwest; Pacific – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: General
Cephalopholis urodeta is a very common species throughout its range and is not known or suspected to be in decline.

Hybridization
Hybridizes with C. nigripinnis at Christmas Island (Randall and Heemstra 1991).

Reproduction
In the Mariana Islands, C. urodeta appeared to have a mating group organization with a single male and six to eight females (Donaldson 1995).

Fisheries-independent data
In Brunei, a UVC survey in 2004 showed low abundance and biomass (A. Cornish pers. comm.):
Abundance: 0/transect (5x50m); Biomass: 0.5g/transect).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: General
Cephaplopholis urodeta is a reef-associated species that is not tolerant of habitat degradation. The species prefers clear, shallow waters of outer reef areas to 60 m. It is occasionally found in lagoons, back-reef areas, and on the reef-top.

Country-specific
In Iriomote Island, Ryukyu Islands, Japan, it occurs on reef flats and slopes (Nakai et al. 2001). In Rota, Mariana Islands, it occurs largely on the upper reef terrace at 2 to 13 m, and is associated with coral pavement (Donaldson 2002). In Iriomote Island, Ryukyu Islands, Japan, C. urodeta is one of the dominant groupers (together with Epinephelus merra and E. fasciatus) (Nakai et al. 2001).

Feeding
Darfkfin hind feed mainly on small fishes and crustaceans. In a quantitative study of the stomach content in Iriomote Island, Ryukyu Islands, Japan (Nakai et al. 2001), small fish and decapod crustaceans constituted 73.4% of stomach contents by weight. Diet composition has seasonal differences; diet is abundant from May to November, and higher hermit crabs in February.

Reproduction and maturity
The minimum size for sexual maturity is 17 cm TL, with a maximum size of 28 cm TL.

The reproductive biology of darkfin hind has been studied briefly (Nakai and Sano 2002). In Iriomote Island, Ryukyu Islands, Japan, darkfin hind ranged from 11.5 to 21.1 cm TL. Males were larger than females. Protogynous hermaphroditism was proposed, but unconfirmed, because the sexual transitional individuals (with degenerating mature oocytes) were not found in samples.
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): General
Major threats to darkfin hind are habitat destruction due to coral reef loss and degradation, climate change and in particular coral bleaching (present and future threat).

Fisheries
Darkfin hind are a target of the subsistence fishery in some regions. It is also targeted by the aquarium trade.

In Hong Kong, it is sold occasionally in markets (fishers caught locally by hook-and-line and traps), with price HK$26-30/pound and size mainly 15 to 20 cm TL (Min Liu unpub. data).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Darkfin Hind are present within numerous protected area throughout its range.

Citation: Liu, M., Yeeting, B., Russell, B., Craig, M.T., Heemstra, P.C. & Pollard, D. 2008. Cephalopholis urodeta. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 30 September 2014.
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