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Chlorurus frontalis

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA ACTINOPTERYGII PERCIFORMES LABRIDAE

Scientific Name: Chlorurus frontalis
Species Authority: (Valenciennes, 1840)
Common Name/s:
English Tan-faced Parrotfish, Reefcrest Parrotfish
Synonym/s:
Callyodon latax Jordan & Seale, 1906
Pseudoscarus jonesi Streets, 1877
Scarus brighami Bryan & Herre, 1903
Scarus frontalis Valenciennes, 1840
Scarus lupus Fowler, 1900
Taxonomic Notes: This species is the sister species of Chlorurus enneacanthus (J.H. Choat pers comm. 2010).

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: 2009-09-16
Assessor/s: Choat, J.H., Carpenter, K.E., Clements, K.D., Rocha, L.A., Russell, B., Myers, R., Lazuardi, M.E., Muljadi, A., Pardede, S. & Rahardjo, P.
Reviewer/s: McIlwain, J. & Craig, M.T.
Justification:
This species is widespread and is found in remote locations. It is abundant at Niue and Middleton Reef. It is captured in artisanal and subsistence fisheries in parts of its range and is heavily exploited in some locations like Guam. However, harvesting is not considered to contribute to global population declines and it is found in a number of marine protected areas throughout its range. It is therefore listed as Least Concern.
History:
2010 Least Concern

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is found from the Ryukyu Islands in the north to the Great Barrier Reef in the south, to Micronesia, Line Islands, Tuamotu Archipealago and Pitcairn Islands in the east (G. Allen pers comm. 2009). It extends into marginal reef areas at the southern limits of its range: Middleton Reef, Rapa and Pitcairn. It was recorded from Nuie as the most abundant large parrotfish (R. Bonaldo pers comm. 2009) It has also been recorded from Halmahera, Indonesia (Green and Muljadi 2009).
Countries:
Native:
American Samoa (American Samoa); Australia; Cook Islands; Fiji; French Polynesia; Guam; Indonesia; Japan; Kiribati (Kiribati Line Is., Phoenix Is.); Marshall Islands; Micronesia, Federated States of ; Nauru; New Caledonia; Northern Mariana Islands; Palau; Papua New Guinea; Pitcairn; Samoa; Solomon Islands; Tokelau; Tonga; Tuvalu; United States Minor Outlying Islands (Howland-Baker Is., Wake Is.); Vanuatu; Wallis and Futuna
Regionally extinct:
Niue
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Pacific – eastern central; Pacific – northwest; Pacific – southwest; Pacific – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is relatively rare over most of its range but fairly common in Middleton Reef, estimates of 2-8 individuals per hectare (Choat et al. 2006). It is abundant at Nuie. It achieves its highest densities on reefs at the southern limit of its range.

Catch records from Guam reported a total of 14,990 kg of C. frontalis landed over the period 1985-2007. It is the 7th most exploited species in Guam. From 1985-1989, an annual average of 669 kg was landed and from 2003-2007, 241 kg landed. The total landed weight of parrotfish in 1985 was 11,532 kg and in 2007 was 4,805 kg. The fishery follows a trend of reduced proportion of larger species (R.F. Myers pers comm. 2009). Recent underwater visual survey (UVC) undertaken in 2008 at 28 sites around Guam reveal this species is only present inside marine reserves (J. McIlwain pers comm. 2010). It is particularly vulnerable to spearfishing because of its preference for shallow habitat.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This is a large excavating parrotfish (50 cm TL). It is characteristic of exposed reef crests and and seaward reefs to 40 m. It is usually seen in small schools.
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species is captured by artisanal and subsistence fisheries in parts of its range. It is heavily fished in Guam. However, localized declines through harvesting are not considered to be causing global population declines.

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: There are no species-specific conservation measures in place for this species. However, its distribution overlaps several marine protected areas within its range.
Citation: Choat, J.H., Carpenter, K.E., Clements, K.D., Rocha, L.A., Russell, B., Myers, R., Lazuardi, M.E., Muljadi, A., Pardede, S. & Rahardjo, P. 2012. Chlorurus frontalis. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 16 April 2014.
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