Solegnathus robustus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Syngnathiformes Syngnathidae

Scientific Name: Solegnathus robustus McCulloch, 1911
Common Name(s):
English Robust Pipehorse, Robust Spiny Pipehorse, 强壮刀海龙
Taxonomic Source(s): Dawson, C E. 1982. Synopsis of the Indo-Pacific genus Solegnathus (Pisces: Syngnathidae). Japanese Journal of Ichthyology 29(2): 139-161.
Taxonomic Notes:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2016-05-18
Assessor(s): Pollom, R.
Reviewer(s): Ralph, G.
Contributor(s): Pogonoski, J., Pollard, D.A., Paxton, J.R., Morgan, S.K. & Bartnik, S.
Solegnathus robustus is a marine outer shelf pipehorse species that is endemic to southern Australia. The species may be particularly susceptible to being caught as bycatch and traded for traditional medicines, as are other members of the genus, but this has not been quantified. Further research is needed in order to determine this species' habitat, population size, trends in abundance, and levels of bycatch. The species is protected from targeted fisheries throughout its range, and there are measures in place to ensure bycatch levels are not of concern. There are no other known threats. Therefore Solegnathus robustus is listed as Least Concern.


Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:

Solegnathus robustus is endemic to the coastal waters of southern Australia, including the South Australian Bight and the Spencer Gulf westwards to Flinders Island in Tasmania (Dawson 1982, 1985; GBIF 2016).

Countries occurrence:
Australia (South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – eastern
Additional data:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO):Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO):UnknownEstimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2:
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):UnknownExtreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO):Unknown
Continuing decline in number of locations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations:Unknown
Lower depth limit (metres):68
Upper depth limit (metres):42
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]


To date there have been no dedicated surveys or population estimates for Solegnathus robustus. Further research is needed in order to determine population size and trends in abundance for this species. 

Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:

Solegnathus robustus is a temperate-water pipehorse, which occurs in benthic habitats of the continental shelf (Paxton et al. 1989) and has been recorded in depths of 42-68 m (Dawson 1985). The diet is unknown but like other species in the family, S. robustus probably feeds on small crustaceans (Pogonoski et al. 2002, Kendrick and Hyndes 2005).  The species is ovoviviparous and males brood the embryos beneath their tail prior to giving live birth (Breder and Rosen 1966, Dawson 1985). Solegnathus robustus attains a total length of at least 350 mm, and the smallest examined brooding male was 314 mm total length (Dawson 1985). 

Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Unknown
Movement patterns:Unknown

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade:

Although this species has not been recorded in trade, syngnathids in general and pipehorses in particular are widely used for traditional medicine, and other members of this genus are traded heavily in Australia for export to Hong Kong and other East and Southeast Asian countries (Martin-Smith et al. 2003, Martin-Smith and Vincent 2006).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

Commercial trawl fishing in the Great Australian Bight has been suggested as a potential threat to this species, as individuals could be captured as bycatch (Pogonoski et al. 2002). However, no information exists on verified threats to the species. There are management measures in place to minimize bycatch with EPBC Act listed species, but none are specifically in place for this species currently (see Conservation section).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

There are no species-specific conservation measures in place for Solegnathus robustus. Along with all syngnathids, the species is subject to the export controls of the Commonwealth Wildlife Protection (Regulation of Exports and Imports) Act 1982 from 1 January 1998 (Pogonoski et al. 2002). All syngnathids and solenostomids were also listed as marine species under section 248 of the EPBC Act 1999 (Pogonoski et al. 2002). It occurs in the South Australia Bight Marine Park. The species is not mentioned in any international legislation or trade regulations.

There is a Great Australian Bight Trawl Sector Bycatch and Discarding Workplan in place (Australian Fisheries Management Authority 2014) that aims to reduce interactions with species listed under the EPBC Act. There are no measures in place specifically for this species.

Citation: Pollom, R. 2017. Solegnathus robustus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T20317A67623270. . Downloaded on 22 June 2018.
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