Apolemichthys xanthurus 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Perciformes Pomacanthidae

Scientific Name: Apolemichthys xanthurus
Species Authority: (Bennett, 1833)
Common Name(s):
English Yellowtail Angelfish, Indian Yellowtail Angelfish
Holacanthus xanthurus Bennett, 1833
Taxonomic Notes: Apolemichthys armitagei Smith, 1955, is a hybrid between A. trimaculatus and A. xanthurus (Pyle and Randall 1994).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2009-10-08
Assessor(s): Pyle, R., Myers, R. & Craig, M.T.
Reviewer(s): Elfes, C., Polidoro, B., Livingstone, S. & Carpenter, K.E.

Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, presumed large overall population and no apparent major threats.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is distributed in the western Indian Ocean where it has been recorded from localities in Mauritius (including Rodrigues), Reunion, Sri Lanka, the east coast of India, and the Maldives (Allen 1980, Randall and Anderson 1993, Fricke 1999, Letourneur et al. 2004). It has occasionally been recorded from western Thailand (Allen and Stone 2005), with a single recent record from Sulawesi (Indonesia) (M. Craig pers. comm. 2009). It is found from around 5-45 m.
Countries occurrence:
India; Indonesia (Sulawesi); Malaysia; Maldives; Mauritius (Mauritius (main island), Rodrigues); Myanmar; Réunion; Sri Lanka; Thailand
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – western; Indian Ocean – eastern
Lower depth limit (metres): 45
Upper depth limit (metres): 5
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It is likely to be common throughout its range, though Endoh (2007) states that it is common only in the Maldives.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is associated with coral reefs and rocky reefs, where it occurs as solitary individuals or in pairs (Allen 1980).
Systems: Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is common in the aquarium marine fish trade. Saleem and Adam (2004) indicate that an export quota of 100 animals was in place for the Maldives in 2003.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

There appear to be no major threats to this species. Collection is limited and is not considered to be impacting the global population.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

There appear to be no species-specific conservation measures in place. This species is believed to be present within a number of marine protected areas.

Classifications [top]

9. Marine Neritic -> 9.2. Marine Neritic - Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
9. Marine Neritic -> 9.8. Marine Neritic - Coral Reef -> 9.8.1. Outer Reef Channel
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
9. Marine Neritic -> 9.8. Marine Neritic - Coral Reef -> 9.8.2. Back Slope
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
9. Marine Neritic -> 9.8. Marine Neritic - Coral Reef -> 9.8.3. Foreslope (Outer Reef Slope)
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
9. Marine Neritic -> 9.8. Marine Neritic - Coral Reef -> 9.8.4. Lagoon
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
5. Biological resource use -> 5.4. Fishing & harvesting aquatic resources -> 5.4.1. Intentional use: (subsistence/small scale)
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Minority (<50%) ♦ severity: Negligible declines ⇒ Impact score: Low Impact: 4 
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

♦  Sport hunting/specimen collecting
 International : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

Allen, G.R. 1980. Butterfly and angelfishes of the world. Wiley, New York.

Allen, G.R. and Stone, G.S. 2005. Rapid Assessment Survey of Tsunami-affected Reefs of Thailand. In: G.R. Allen and G.S. Stone (eds), Final Report to the New England Aquarium. New England Aquarium Global Marine Programs Office, Boston, USA.

Endoh, K. 2007. Angelfishes of the World. Two Little Fishies, Inc., Miami Gardens, Florida.

Fricke, R. 1999. Fishes of the Mascarene Islands (Réunion, Mauritius, Rodriguez): an annotated checklist, with descriptions of new species. Theses Zoology, Königstein, Germany.

IUCN. 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2010.4). Available at: (Accessed: 27 October 2010).

Letourneur, Y., Chabanet, P., Durville, P., Taquet, M., Teissier, E., Parmentier, M., Quéro, J.-C. and Pothin, K. 2004. An updated checklist of the marine fish fauna of Reunion Island, south-western Indian Ocean. Cybium 28(3): 199-216.

Pyle, R.L. and Randall, J.E. 1994. A review of hybridization in marine angelfishes. Environmental Biology of Fishes 41: 127-145.

Randall, J.E. and Anderson, R.C. 1993. Annotated checklist of the epipelagic and shore fishes of the Maldives Islands. Ichthyology Bulletin of the J.L.B. Smith Institute of Ichthyology 59: 1-47.

Saleem, M.R. and Adam, M.S. 2004. Review of Aquarium Fishery of the Maldives - 2003. Marine Research Centre, Malé.

Citation: Pyle, R., Myers, R. & Craig, M.T. 2010. Apolemichthys xanthurus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T165844A6146908. . Downloaded on 26 November 2015.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided