Chaetodon interruptus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Chaetodon interruptus
Species Authority: Ahl, 1923
Common Name(s):
English Yellow Teardrop Butterflyfish, Yellow Teardrop Butterflyfish
Chaetodon unimaculatus interruptus Ahl, 1923
Taxonomic Notes: This species has formerly been considered to be a subspecies of Chaetodon unimaculatus.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2009-10-08
Assessor(s): Myers, R. & Pratchett, M.
Reviewer(s): Elfes, C., Polidoro, B., Livingstone, S. & Carpenter, K.E.

While there have been no declines documented, this species is dependent on live coral cover, which may therefore make it susceptible to habitat loss. However, it has a relatively wide distribution, apparently large population and no obvious major threats other than coral loss. It is therefore listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is widely distributed in the Indian Ocean, from the East African coast from Socotra to South Africa, east to northern Sumatra and western Thailand including all islands in between and southern India (Burgess 1978, Allen 1980). It is found at depths ranging between about 2-45 m.
British Indian Ocean Territory; Comoros; French Southern Territories (Mozambique Channel Is.); India (Andaman Is., Nicobar Is.); Kenya; Madagascar; Maldives; Mauritius; Mayotte; Mozambique; Myanmar; Réunion; Seychelles; Somalia; South Africa; Sri Lanka; Tanzania, United Republic of; Thailand
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – eastern; Indian Ocean – western
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).
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is associated with lagoon and seaward reefs, where it is usually found in areas with abundant soft or hard corals. Occurs alone or in small groups. Feeds on a varied diet comprising hard and soft coral fragments, sponges, polychaetes, and filamentous algae (G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006).
Systems: Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is occasionally collected for the aquarium trade (G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

This species likely 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. Research is required to establish its specific dietary requirements and reliance on coral, and the threat of coral loss.

Citation: Myers, R. & Pratchett, M. 2010. Chaetodon interruptus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <>. Downloaded on 30 March 2015.
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