Chaetodon pelewensis 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Perciformes Chaetodontidae

Scientific Name: Chaetodon pelewensis Kner, 1868
Common Name(s):
English Dot and dash Butterflyfish, Dot-and-dash Butterflyfish, Dot-and-dash Coralfish, Sunset Butterflyfish, Sunset Butterflyfish
Chaetodon germanus De Vis, 1884
Chaetodon pelewensis germanus De Vis, 1884

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2009-10-07
Assessor(s): Pyle, R., Myers, R., Craig, M.T. & Pratchett, M.
Reviewer(s): Elfes, C., Polidoro, B., Livingstone, S. & Carpenter, K.E.

While there have been no declines documented, Chaetodon pelewensis generally feeds on live coral, which may make it susceptible to extensive coral loss. However, it has a wide distribution, apparently large population and no obvious major threats other than coral loss. It is listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Found in the Southern Pacific Ocean, from Papua New Guinea to the Tuamotu Archipelag, south to Lord Howe Island. Abundant on the Great Barrier Reef and in the Coral Sea (G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006). It is found from 1-45 m in depth. Range size ~19.7 million km2, from values estimated by Jones et al. (2002) based on projection of distribution maps from Allen et al. (1998).
Countries occurrence:
American Samoa; Australia; Chile (Easter Is.); Cook Islands; Fiji; French Polynesia; Indonesia; Kiribati (Phoenix Is.); New Caledonia; Niue; Norfolk Island; Palau; Papua New Guinea; Pitcairn; Samoa; Solomon Islands; Tokelau; Tonga; Tuvalu; United States Minor Outlying Islands (US Line Is.); Vanuatu; Wallis and Futuna
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Pacific – eastern central; Pacific – southwest; Pacific – western central
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):45
Upper depth limit (metres):1
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:It is generally common with stable populations (G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006).

Currently the most abundant species in Moorea, French Polynesia (mean of 4.1 individuals per 200 m2) and has increased in abundance over time due to increasing abundance of Pocillopora at this location (Berumen and Pratchett 2006)

Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Inhabits coral reefs to at least 45 m and forms pairs (Pyle 2001). Feeds mostly on coral polyps, but also consumes benthic invertebrates (G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006). Unlike most corallivorous butterflyfishes, it tends to prefer Pocillopora over Acropora (Berumen and Pratchett 2006).

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Frequently exported through the aquarium trade (Pyle 2001). Approximately 12,000 individuals traded between 1988-2002 (Global Marine Aquarium Database 2009).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species relies on live coral for food and/or recruitment, and may therefore decline in abundance following climate-induced coral depletion (Pratchett et al. 2008). Currently this is not considered a threat, and there appear to be no other major threats to this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

There appear to be no species-specific conservation measures in place. This species is present within marine protected areas. Monitoring of this species is needed in conjunction with coral monitoring, as well as determination of the degree of co-dependence between this species and corals.

Further research  is required to address issues of hybridization between C. pelewensis and C. punctofasciatus.


Citation: Pyle, R., Myers, R., Craig, M.T. & Pratchett, M. 2010. Chaetodon pelewensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T165653A6081960. . Downloaded on 15 October 2018.
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