190759-26

Scarus ferrugineus 

Scope: Persian Gulf
Language: English
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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Perciformes Labridae

Scientific Name: Scarus ferrugineus Forsskål, 1775
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Rusty Parrotfish
French Perroquet Ronille
Spanish Loro Orín
Synonym(s):
Pseudoscarus augustinus Kossmann & Räuber, 1877
Scarus aeruginosus Valenciennes, 1840
Scarus caerulescens Valenciennes, 1840
Scarus marshalli Schultz, 1958
Taxonomic Source(s): Eschmeyer, W.N. and Fricke, R. (eds). 2015. Catalog of Fishes: genera, species, references. Updated 1 October 2015. Available at: http://researcharchive.calacademy.org/research/ichthyology/catalog/fishcatmain.asp. (Accessed: 1 October 2015).
Taxonomic Notes: The sister species of Scarus ferrugineus is S. persicus (J.H. Choat pers. comm. 2010). The initial phases of the two species are very difficult to tell apart.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable B2ab(i,ii,iii) (Regional assessment) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2013-11-06
Assessor(s): Choat, J.H.
Reviewer(s): Craig, M.T. & Sadovy, Y.
Contributor(s): Burt, J. & Feary, D.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Comeros-Raynal, M. & Buchanan, J.
Justification:
Scarus ferrugineus is a coral-dependent species that is known from Kuwait to the United Arab Emirates in the Persian Gulf. The species is rare throughout the Persian Gulf. The area of occupancy (AOO) of Scarus ferrugineus in the Persian Gulf is estimated to be 650 km².

In the Persian Gulf, coral assemblage habitat is naturally and severely fragmented with virtually no contiguous coral assemblages remaining. The estimated total area of occupancy for coral assemblages in the Persian Gulf is 700 km², but is likely to be much less because of continued coral assemblage loss and degradation due to recurring bleaching events, coastal development, and other pressures. This is particularly true for the southern Persian Gulf, where coastal development is most prevalent. In 2002, it was estimated that 40% of the Persian Gulf coasts had already been developed. As the human population within the region increases, it is expected that coastal development will accelerate to accommodate this increase. As a result of increasing sea surface temperatures, coral bleaching events have also increased in frequency over the past few decades, degrading coral assemblages in the Persian Gulf, especially those found nearshore in the southern Persian Gulf.

While this species is not targeted by fisheries and seldom enters traps, FAO aggregate landings for parrotfishes reported from Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates in the last 32 years indicate an initial increasing trajectory of parrotfish landings. However, there is a linear decline (48%) in landings in the last decade from 2001-2011. We suspect that effort is likely to increase in the next 10-15 years in the region.

There are no known species-specific conservation measures in place for this fish. However, there are several marine protected areas within its distribution, including the Jubail Marine Wildlife Sanctuary, where Scarus ferrugineus has been recorded. Oceanographic data suggests that a rescue effect through the Strait of Hormuz is negligible. Given the species' small AOO, its severely fragmented population, and the continuing decline in its habitat quality, S. ferrugineus is listed as Vulnerable under criterion B (VU B2ab(i,ii,iii)). We recommend monitoring this species' population and habitat trends.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:In the Persian Gulf, S. ferrugineus is known from Kuwait to the United Arab Emirates (Bruce and Randall 1984, Choat et al. 2012).

Countries occurrence:
Native:
Bahrain; Kuwait; Qatar; Saudi Arabia; United Arab Emirates
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Indian Ocean – western
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:650Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Yes
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):NoEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:216500
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):YesExtreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO):No
Lower depth limit (metres):60
Upper depth limit (metres):1
Range Map:190759-26

Population [top]

Population:Scarus ferrugineus is rare in the Persian Gulf (J.H. Choat pers. comm. 2013). Between 1985-1987, Coles and Tarr (1990) conducted underwater visual surveys on nearshore and offshore coral assemblages in Saudi Arabia, in which the mean abundance of S. ferrugineus varied from 1 to 7.5 individuals/100 m². Between 1992-1995, Krupp and Almarri (1996) conducted underwater visual surveys on nearshore and offshore coral assemblages within the Jubail Marine Wildlife Sanctuary, in which the mean abundance of S. ferrugineus at Karan Island varied from 0.1 to 7.2 individuals/100 m². In a series of counts on offshore coral assemblages at Halul Island (Qatar), the mean abundance of S. ferrugineus was estimated to be approximately 0.5 individuals/100 m² (Ayling 2004 unpub. data). During underwater visual censuses on coral assemblages in the southern Persian Gulf (Al Dhabiya, Ras Ghanadah, Jebel Ali, and Saadiyat Island) conducted in October and December 2008 and January 2012, S. ferrugineus was not observed (D. Feary pers. comm. 2013). Similarly, during underwater visual censuses on coral assemblages in the southern Persian Gulf (Al Dhabiya, Ras Ghanadah, and Saadiyat Island) conducted from spring 2011 to winter 2013, S. ferrugineus was not observed (J. Burt pers. comm. 2013).

There is potential for some rescue effect from outside of the Persian Gulf through the Strait of Hormuz, however, oceanographic data suggests that a rescue effect is negligible because of the limited entry into the Persian Gulf via the Strait of Hormuz (Coles 2003, Rezai et al. 2004), as well as a counter-current circulation (Chao et al. 1992) which may potentially facilitate the movement of propagules out of the Persian Gulf (Feary et al. 2012), and physical extremes of both salinity and temperature (Sheppard et al. 1992, Riegl 2001, Sheppard and Loughland 2002).

Persian Gulf Fisheries data
There are no records of S. ferrugineus in Persian Gulf fisheries nor has it been observed in Persian Gulf markets (J.H. Choat pers. comm. 2013). This species is not targeted and seldom enters traps. From 1979-2011, reported FAO aggregate catch statistics from Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates indicate an initial increasing trajectory, potentially due to increasing effort, of parrotfish landings (FAO 2013). However, a decline of 48% in parrotfish landings occurred between 2001-2011. This pattern is characteristic of change in fishing effort, in which an initial increase in catch reflects switching to this group when more desirable species (e.g. Epinephelids, Lutjanids, Scombrids) are depleted. Parrotfish landings in the Persian Gulf are dominated by S. ghobban. We suspect that effort is likely to increase in the next 10-15 years in the region.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Scarus ferrugineus is a coral-dependent species, inhabiting coral and rocky reefs (coral assemblages in the Persian Gulf) and protected coral slopes between 1-60 m in depth (Bruce and Randall 1984, Lieske and Myers 1994). Its diet is mainly comprised of benthic algae (Bruce and Randall 1984). The recorded maximum age is 15 years (J.H. Choat pers. comm. 2009). The recorded maximum total length (TL) is 41 cm (Randall 1986).
Systems:Marine
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: There are no records of S. ferrugineus in Persian Gulf fisheries nor has it been observed in Persian Gulf markets (J.H. Choat pers. comm. 2013). Scarus ferrugineus is not targeted and seldom enters traps.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): In the Persian Gulf, substantial sea bottom dredging, resulting in changes of water flow and sedimentation rates, for industrial, infrastructure-based, and residential and tourism development along the coast have caused deterioration in most benthic habitats (Sheppard et al. 2010). Coral assemblages in the Persian Gulf, are estimated (likely overestimated) to have a total area of occupancy of 700 km². Al-Ghadban and Price (2002) determined that by the early 1990s, 40% of most of the Persian Gulf states' coasts had been developed in some way. It is not known whether or not S. ferrugineus is directly affected by coastal development, but due to the large-scale of coastal development throughout the Persian Gulf and given the habitat preferences of the species, it is likely that it is impacted negatively in some parts of the region. As a result of increasing sea surface temperatures, coral bleaching events have also increased in frequency over the past few decades (Burt et al. 2014), degrading coral assemblages in the Persian Gulf, especially those found nearshore in the southern Persian Gulf. This is likely to also have a negative impact on this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no known species-specific conservation measures in place for S. ferrugineus. However, there are several marine protected areas within its distribution, including the Jubail Marine Wildlife Sanctuary, where S. ferrugineus has been recorded (Krupp and Müller 1994, Krupp and Almarri 1996).

Citation: Choat, J.H. 2015. Scarus ferrugineus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T190759A57136349. . Downloaded on 26 April 2018.
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