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Acanthurus albipectoralis

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA ACTINOPTERYGII PERCIFORMES ACANTHURIDAE

Scientific Name: Acanthurus albipectoralis
Species Authority: Allen & Ayling, 1987
Common Name(s):
English Whitefin Surgeonfish

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2010-05-03
Assessor(s): Russell, B., Stockwell, B., Nanola, C., McIlwain, J., Choat, J.H., Clements, K.D., Rocha, L.A., Abesamis, R. & Myers, R.
Reviewer(s): Davidson, L., Edgar, G. & Kulbicki, M.
Justification:
Acanthurus albipectoralis is widespread and common in parts of its range. It is harvested for food but is caught only incidentally. There are no major threats known and it occurs in a number of marine protected areas within its range. It is therefore listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Acanthurus albipectoralis is found from the Great Barrier Reef, Herald Cays, Chesterfield Islands and reefs of the Coral Sea (17°00'S) to Swains Reef, Queensland (20°57'S), New Caledonia, Loyalty Islands and Tonga. It was recorded from American Samoa (Green et al. 1999). Phung (1998) recorded this species from the Spratly Islands, central South China Sea. This record from the Spratly Islands needs to be confirmed.
Countries:
Native:
American Samoa (American Samoa, American Samoa, Swains Is.); Australia; Fiji; New Caledonia; Samoa; Tonga; Vanuatu; Wallis and Futuna
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Pacific – eastern central; Pacific – southwest; Pacific – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Acanthurus albipectoralis is uncommon in the American Samoa National Park (National Park of Samoa Checklist of Fishes accessed 21 April 2010). It is common in the Coral Sea and Elizabeth Middleton Reefs (J.H. Choat pers. comm. 2010).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Acanthurus albipectoralis is found off exposed outer-reef slopes. It is usually seen in small aggregations feeding above the bottom on zooplankton (Randall 2001).

The sexes are separate among the acanthurids (Reeson 1983). Acanthurids do not display obvious sexual dimorphism, males assume courtship colours (J.H. Choat pers. comm. 2010).
Systems: Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Acanthurus albipectoralis is harvested for food but is not targeted. It is caught only incidentally.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats known for this species.

Surgeonfishes show varying degrees of habitat preference and utilization of coral reef habitats, with some species spending the majority of their life stages on coral reef while others primarily utilize seagrass beds, mangroves, algal beds, and /or rocky reefs. The majority of surgeonfishes are exclusively found on coral reef habitat, and of these, approximately 80% are experiencing a greater than 30% loss of coral reef area and degradation of coral reef habitat quality across their distributions. However, more research is needed to understand the long-term effects of coral reef habitat loss and degradation on these species' populations. Widespread coral reef loss and declining habitat conditions are particularly worrying for species that recruit into areas with live coral cover, 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 (Comeros-Raynal et al. 2012).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no species-specific conservation measures in place for this species. Its distribution overlaps several marine protected areas in parts of its range.

Citation: Russell, B., Stockwell, B., Nanola, C., McIlwain, J., Choat, J.H., Clements, K.D., Rocha, L.A., Abesamis, R. & Myers, R. 2012. Acanthurus albipectoralis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 26 July 2014.
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