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Scarus coeruleus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA ACTINOPTERYGII PERCIFORMES LABRIDAE

Scientific Name: Scarus coeruleus
Species Authority: (Edwards, 1771)
Common Name(s):
English Blue Parrotfish, Blue Kwab, Kwab, Blueman
French Perroquet Bleu
Spanish Guacamaya Azul, Jabón, Loro Azul
Synonym(s):
Calliodon gibbosus Bloch & Schneider, 1801
Coryphaena coerulea Edwards, 1771
Coryphaena coerulea Bloch, 1786
Scarus coeruleus Bloch & Schneider, 1801
Scarus coerulus (Bloch, 1786)
Scarus loro Bloch & Schneider, 1801
Scarus nuchalis Poey, 1860
Scarus obtusus Poey, 1860
Scarus trilobatus Lacepède, 1802
Sparus holocyaneos Lacepède, 1802
Taxonomic Notes: Westneat and Alfaro (2005) recognize the Scarini as a tribe within the family Labridae. The genera Chlororus and Scarus are two distinct monophyletic lineages (Smith et al. 2008).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2009-09-17
Assessor(s): Rocha, L.A., Choat, J.H., Clements, K.D., Russell, B., Myers, R., Lazuardi, M.E., Muljadi, A., Pardede, S. & Rahardjo, P.
Reviewer(s): McIlwain, J. & Craig, M.T.
Justification:
This species is the second largest parrotfish in the Caribbean. Even though large specimens are targeted by fishermen, there seems to be no evidence of
apparent global decline in population sizes (Friedlander and Beets 2008).There are however, severe population declines in reefs close to densely populated areas around Haiti and Jamaica (Hawkins and Roberts 2004). However, it is present within several conservation areas throughout the Caribbean. Fisheries for all parrotfishes is permanently closed in Bermuda. It is protected and relatively abundant in parts of its range (i.e., Bonaire). It is therefore listed as Least Concern. Further research is needed to evaluate its population status.
History:
2010 Least Concern

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is found from Bermuda and Maryland (USA) to Venezuela.
Countries:
Native:
Anguilla; Antigua and Barbuda; Aruba; Bahamas; Barbados; Belize; Bermuda; Cayman Islands; Colombia; Costa Rica; Cuba; Dominica; Dominican Republic; Grenada; Guadeloupe; Guatemala; Haiti; Honduras; Jamaica; Martinique; Mexico; Montserrat; Nicaragua; Panama; Puerto Rico; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Saint Lucia; Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; Trinidad and Tobago; Turks and Caicos Islands; United States; Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of; Virgin Islands, British; Virgin Islands, U.S.
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Atlantic – northwest; Atlantic – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Currently population size/trends have not been assessed. This species is not present in FAO global production estimates. This species is naturally uncommon (L. Rocha pers comm. 2009).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is reef associated from 3-40 m (J.H. Choat pers comm. 2009). It feeds on algae and small benthic invertebrates in the sand. It sometimes forms large spawning aggregations (Lieske and Myers 1994). Juveniles are found on seagrass beds and mangroves. It is also found in shallow sand and rubble flats.
Systems: Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is caught in multi-species fisheries, but a commercial fishery exists for larger specimens.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Even though fishery landings of these and other medium to large-sized parrotfish species in the Caribbean have been steadily increasing, there is no apparent global decline in population sizes (Friedlander and Beets 2008). There are however, severe population declines in reefs close to densely populated areas around Haiti and Jamaica (Hawkins and Roberts 2004).

Parrotfishes show varying degrees of habitat preference and utilization of coral reef habitats, with some species spending the majority of their life stages on coral reefs, while others primarily utilize seagrass beds, mangroves, algal beds, and /or rocky reefs. Although the majority of the parrotfishes occur in mixed habitat (primarily inhabiting seagrass beds, mangroves, and rocky reefs) approximately 78% of these mixed habitat species are experiencing greater than 30% loss of coral reef area and habitat quality across their distributions. Of those species that occur exclusively in coral reef habitat, more than 80% are experiencing a greater than 30% of coral reef loss and degradation across their distributions. However, more research is needed to understand the long-term effects of habitat loss and degradation on these species populations.   Widespread coral reef loss and declining habitat conditions are particularly worrying for species that depend on live coral reefs for food and shelter especially as studies have shown that protection of pristine habitats facilitate the persistence of adult populations in species that have spatially separated adult and juvenile habitats. Furthermore, coral reef loss and declining habitat conditions are particularly worrying for some corallivorous excavating parrotfishes that play major roles in reef dynamics and sedimentation (Comeros-Raynal et al. 2012).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is present within several conservation areas throughout the Caribbean. Fisheries for all parrotfishes is permanently closed in Bermuda. It is protected and relatively abundant in Bonaire (J.H. Choat pers comm. 2009).

Citation: Rocha, L.A., Choat, J.H., Clements, K.D., Russell, B., Myers, R., Lazuardi, M.E., Muljadi, A., Pardede, S. & Rahardjo, P. 2012. Scarus coeruleus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 24 November 2014.
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