Chaetodon nigropunctatus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Perciformes Chaetodontidae

Scientific Name: Chaetodon nigropunctatus Sauvage, 1880
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Black-spotted Butterflyfish, Dark Butterflyfish, Japanese Butterflyfish, Mystery Butterflyfish
Chaetodon obscurus Boulenger, 1888
Taxonomic Source(s): Eschmeyer, W.N. and Fricke, R. (eds). 2015. Catalog of Fishes: genera, species, references. Updated 1 October 2015. Available at: (Accessed: 1 October 2015).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2009-10-07
Assessor(s): Allen, G. & Myers, R.
Reviewer(s): Elfes, C., Polidoro, B., Livingstone, S. & Carpenter, K.E.
Chaetodon nigropunctatus feeds predominantly on live coral, making it susceptible to extensive coral loss. However, it is found throughout the Arabian Gulf, and there are no obvious major threats beyond coral loss. It is listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to the western Indian Ocean, the Persian Gulf, Gulf of Oman and the southeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula to about 20 degrees north (Allen 1980, G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006). It is found at depths of between 1-40 m.
Countries occurrence:
Bahrain; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Kuwait; Oman; Qatar; Saudi Arabia; United Arab Emirates
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – western
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):40
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).
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Populations are generally found on shallow coral or rocky reefs and in sandy lagoons (Allen 1980, G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006). Individuals roam widely over the reef while foraging (Allen 1980). It is most often encountered as single animals or in pairs (Allen 1980). It feeds predominantly on live corals.

Use and Trade [top]

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

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, there have been no documented declines associated with coral loss, 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 believed to be 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.

Citation: Allen, G. & Myers, R. 2010. Chaetodon nigropunctatus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T165696A6094656. . Downloaded on 18 September 2018.
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