Saurida undosquamis 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Aulopiformes Synodontidae

Scientific Name: Saurida undosquamis (Richardson, 1848)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Brushtooth Lizardfish, Checkered Lizardfish, Grey Saury, Large-scaled Saury, Large-scale Grinner, Largescale Lizardfish, True Lizardfish
French Anoli à Grandes Ecailles , Anoli de Mer, Poisson-lézard à Grandes Ecailles
Spanish Lagarto, Lagarto Escamoso
Saurus undosquamis Richardson, 1848
Taxonomic Source(s): Eschmeyer, W.N., Fricke, R. and Van der Laan, R. (eds). 2016. Catalog of Fishes: genera, species, references. Updated 29 September 2016. Available at: (Accessed: 29 September 2016).
Taxonomic Notes: The name Saurida undosquamis has been widely misapplied in the literature. The true Saurida undosquamis is probably restricted in range to northwestern Australia (B. Russell pers. comm. 2015).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2015-03-02
Assessor(s): Russell, B., Smith-Vaniz, W.F. & Lawrence, A.
Reviewer(s): Ralph, G. & Harvey, M.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Ralph, G.
Saurida undosquamis is restricted to the northwestern coast of Australia, where it can be locally abundant. It is of limited commercial importance, most often taken as a component of bycatch in Australian prawn trawl fisheries. There are no known major threats to this species at this time, and there are extensive marine reserves throughout its range. Therefore, Saurida undosquamis it listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:The name Saurida undosquamis has been widely misapplied in the literature. The true Saurida undosquamis is restricted to the northwestern coast of Australia. Saurida undosquamis occurs over sand or mud bottoms in tropical waters at depths of up to 200 m (B. Russell pers. comm. 2015). Inoue and Nakabo (2006) discuss the confirmed and questionable reports of occurrence for S. undosquamis.
Countries occurrence:
Australia; Indonesia; Timor-Leste
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – eastern; Pacific – western central
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):200
Upper depth limit (metres):1
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Saurida undosquamis is common and locally abundant (B. Russell pers. comm. 2015).
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Saurida undosquamis is a reef-associated, amphidromous species (Riede 2004) which occurs over sand or mud bottoms in tropical waters at depths of up to 200 m (B. Russell pers. comm. 2015, Yamada et al. 1995, Heemstra 1995). This species feeds on fishes, crustaceans, and other invertebrates (Fischer et al. 1990). Maximum standard length for this species is 400 mm (B. Russell pers. comm. 2016 September), but it is commonly found to be 300 mm (TL) (Bouhlel 1988).

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Saurida undosquamis is generally marketed frozen, sometimes fresh and as fish cakes ('kamaboko') in Japan (Sulak 1984).

Al-Quraishy et al. (2012) report a newly proposed species of microspoidia, Heterosporis saurida, which is species-specific to S. undosquamis. This parasitic infection can be determined by the presence of multiple cysts located in the skeletal muscles, body cavity and mesenteric tissues. Microsporidia that infect the musculature and mesenteric tissues of commercially important fish species have a negative impact on fish commerce.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Saurida undosquamis has been a significant part of bycatch from trawling operations off northwestern Australia. The finfish trawl fishery is no longer active, but it continues to be a component of bycatch in the prawn trawl fishery, which is currently active throughout northern Australia (Arregu et al., eds.1996).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no species-specific conservation efforts in place for S. undosquamis; however, the range of this species overlaps with a number of marine protected areas (IUCN and UNEP 2014), such as the North-west Commonwealth Marine Reserve.

Citation: Russell, B., Smith-Vaniz, W.F. & Lawrence, A. 2016. Saurida undosquamis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T18123647A55159722. . Downloaded on 20 August 2018.
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