Chaetodon leucopleura 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Perciformes Chaetodontidae

Scientific Name: Chaetodon leucopleura
Species Authority: Playfair, 1867
Common Name(s):
English Somali Butterflyfish, Somali Butterflyfish
Chaetodon leucopygus Ahl, 1923

Assessment Information [top]

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

This species has a wide distribution and there is no evidence of any declines in the population. There are no known threats. This species is listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species occurs in the western Indian Ocean, along the East African coast from Zanzibar northwards to the southern Red Sea (including the Farasan Archipelago, Saudi Arabia) and Oman, and the Seychelles Islands (including the Aldabra Group) (Allen 1980, G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006) and Socotra. It has been recorded between 7-80 m (G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006).
Countries occurrence:
Djibouti; Eritrea; Kenya; Oman; Saudi Arabia; Seychelles; Somalia; Sudan; Tanzania, United Republic of; Yemen
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Indian Ocean – western
Lower depth limit (metres):80
Upper depth limit (metres):7
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:It is generally common (G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006). There is no reason to believe that the population is declining.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Populations have been recorded in coral and rocky reefs, as well as open rubble, in deep water (G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006). It is usually found as solitary animals or in pairs.

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is occasionally collected for the aquarium trade (Allen 1980, G.R. Allen pers. comm. 2006).

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 -> 9.8.3. Foreslope (Outer Reef Slope)
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: No decline ⇒ Impact score: Low Impact: 4 
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

♦  Pets/display animals, horticulture
 International : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

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

Burgess, W.E. 1978. Butterflyfishes of the world. A monograph of the Family Chaetodontidae. T.F.H. Publications, Neptune City, New Jersey.

Garpe, K.C. and Öhman, M.C. 2003. Coral and fish distribution patterns in Mafia Island Marine Park, Tanzania: fish-habitat interactions. Hydrobiologia 498: 191-211.

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

Randall, J.E. 1995. Coastal fishes of Oman. University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Righton, D., Kemp, J. and Ormond, R. 1996. Biogeography, community structure and diversity of Red Sea and western Indian Ocean butterflyfishes. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 76(1): 223-228.

Smith, J.L.B. and Smith, M.M. 1963. The fishes of Seychelles. Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa.

Citation: Myers, R. & Pratchett, M. 2010. Chaetodon leucopleura. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T165610A6067508. . Downloaded on 29 November 2015.
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