Solenostomus cyanopterus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Syngnathiformes Solenostomidae

Scientific Name: Solenostomus cyanopterus Bleeker, 1854
Common Name(s):
English Robust Ghost Pipefish, Blue-finned Ghost Pipefish, Ghost Pipefish, Racek's Ghost Pipefish, Rough-snout Ghost Pipefish, Squaretail Ghost Pipefish
French Poisson-fantôme robuste , Poisson-fantôme rugueux
Solenichthys raceki Whitley 1955
Solenostoma cyanopterus Bleeker 1854
Solenostomus bleekeri Dumeril 1870
Taxonomic Source(s): Orr, J.W. and Fritzsche, R.A. 1993. Revision of the ghost pipefishes, family Solenostomidae (Teleostei: Syngnathoidei). Copeia 1993(1): 168-182.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2015-03-11
Assessor(s): Dick, K. & Pollom, R.
Reviewer(s): Smith, R. & Ralph, G.
Solenostomus cyanopterus is a widespread Indo-Pacific ghost pipefish that inhabits a variety of habitat types. Although some habitats that the species associates with are declining over their range, the species utilizes many different habitats. The species is likely taken for the aquarium trade, but at low levels. Therefore this species is listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:

Solenostomus cyanopterus is found along the east African coast from South Africa to Kenya, as well as the many islands located off of this coast such as Madagascar, Comoros, Mauritius and the Seychelles. The species has also been sighted in northern parts of the Red Sea off the coasts of Egypt and Jordan, and in the Andaman Islands. In the South Pacific records exist from Indonesia to Fiji, and and it has been sighted as far north as Japan and South Korea. The species has also been found off the coast of Australia in the provinces of New South Wales, Queensland, and Western Australia (Orr and Fritzsche 1993, Yim et al. 2007).

Countries occurrence:
Australia (Ashmore-Cartier Is., Coral Sea Is. Territory, Lord Howe Is., Macquarie Is., New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia); British Indian Ocean Territory (Chagos Archipelago); Brunei Darussalam; Cambodia; China (Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Shanghai, Zhejiang); Christmas Island; Cocos (Keeling) Islands; Comoros; Disputed Territory (Paracel Is., Spratly Is.); Djibouti; Eritrea; Fiji; Guam; Hong Kong; India (Andaman Is.); Israel; Japan (Honshu, Kazan-retto, Kyushu, Nansei-shoto, Shikoku); Jordan; Kenya; Korea, Democratic People's Republic of; Macao; Madagascar; Malaysia (Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah, Sarawak); Maldives; Marshall Islands; Mayotte; Mozambique; Myanmar (Coco Is., Myanmar (mainland)); New Caledonia; Norfolk Island; Northern Mariana Islands; Pakistan; Palau; Papua New Guinea (Bismarck Archipelago, North Solomons, Papua New Guinea (main island group)); Philippines; Saudi Arabia; Singapore; Solomon Islands (Santa Cruz Is., South Solomons); Somalia; South Africa (Eastern Cape Province, KwaZulu-Natal); Sri Lanka; Sudan; Taiwan, Province of China (Kin-Men, Ma-tsu-Pai-chuan, Taiwan, Province of China (main island)); Tanzania, United Republic of; Thailand; Timor-Leste; Tuvalu; Vanuatu; Viet Nam; Wallis and Futuna; Yemen (North Yemen, Socotra, South Yemen)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – eastern; Indian Ocean – western; Pacific – western central; Pacific – eastern central; Pacific – northwest; Pacific – southwest
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):28
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:To date there have been no dedicated surveys or population estimates for Solenostomus cyanopterus. Further research is needed to determine population size and trends in abundance for this species.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations:UnknownPopulation severely fragmented:Unknown
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:UnknownAll individuals in one subpopulation:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Solenostomus cyanopterus is found in tropical marine waters over a wide range, all throughout the Indo-Pacific (Gerlach 2009). The species is known to inhabit shallow waters with rocky and coralline reefs, vegetation (Orr and Fritzsche 1993) or sandy bottoms (Yim et al. 2007). They are commonly found in beds of Halophila, Cystoseira, and Sargassum (Padmanabahn 1961, Fishelson 1966) where they float head down, mimicking vegetation (Gerlach 2009). The species’ colouration is highly dependent on its current habitat as it can alter its colour to blend in with its surroundings (Orr and Fritzsche 1993, Gerlach 2009).

Solenostomus cyanopterus is known to feed on small benthic and pelagic invertebrates, mainly crustaceans (Fritzsche and Thiesfeld 1999). The species is an ambush predator that relies on its camouflage in order to hunt (Wetzel and Wourms 1995). The species is known to be slow moving (Yim et al. 2007).

Unlike other syngnathids, female S. cyanopterus broods the eggs in a brood pouch formed from their fused pelvic fins (Padmanabahn 1961, Orr and Fritzsche 1993, Wetzel and Wourms 1995).
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes
Movement patterns:Unknown
Congregatory:Congregatory (year-round)

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: No specific targeted fishery is known for S. cyanopterus and the species is not utilized as a human food source. The species is collected by aquarium hobbyists and for display in public aquariums although the extent of this collection is unknown. This species may be caught in bottom trawls or by hand, however further information is needed in order to determine the effects these activities are having on wild populations (Fritzsche and Thiesfeld 1999).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The species is likely under threat from coral and seagrass habitat loss (Bruno and Selig 2007, Waycott et al. 2009), but it uses a variety of other habitat types. It may be targeted and/or caught as bycatch and traded for aquarium use.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no known species-specific conservation measures in place for this Solenostomus cyanopterus. The species is not subject to any international legislation or trade control. They occur in a number of protected areas across their range.

Errata [top]

Errata reason: This errata assessment has been created because the map was accidentally left out of the version published previously.

Citation: Dick, K. & Pollom, R. 2016. Solenostomus cyanopterus (errata version published in 2017). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T65363316A115407689. . Downloaded on 24 March 2018.
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