Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Acanthuriformes
(Surgeonfishes) > Acanthuridae
(Surgeonfishes, tangs, unicornfishes) > Acanthurinae
Etymology: Acanthurus: Greek, akantha = thorn + Greek, oura = tail (Ref. 45335).
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 2 - 50 m (Ref. 58652), usually 2 - 20 m (Ref. 27115). Tropical; 24°C - 28°C (Ref. 27115)
Western Pacific: Philippines, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and off northwestern Australia.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 45.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 48637)
soft rays: 25 - 26. A large semicircular to subtriangular black mark anteriorly on side of body (open part anterior), the upper end at level of eye above dorsal end of gill opening, the lower end above base of pectoral fins. Head suffused with purplish blue. Caudal fin blackish centrally with a yellow band in each lobe that merges with white band at base, the posterior margin narrowly blue (Ref 9808).
A solitary and wary species found in clear seaward reefs and drop-offs (Ref. 9710, 48637). Often grazes algae from surface of sponges (Ref. 90102). Minimum depth reported from Ref. 27115.
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Randall, J.E., 1956. A revision of the surgeonfish genus Acanthurus. Pac. Sci. 10(2):159-235. (Ref. 1920)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 123416)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: minor commercial; aquarium: commercial
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningSpawning aggregationFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 24.7 - 29, mean 28.1 °C (based on 736 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01445 (0.00639 - 0.03272), b=3.00 (2.80 - 3.20), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 2.0 ±0.1 se; based on size and trophs of closest relatives
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate to high vulnerability (46 of 100) .
Nutrients (Ref. 124155
): Calcium = 50.3 [16.9, 125.0] mg/100g ; Iron = 0.792 [0.297, 2.109] mg/100g ; Protein = 18.9 [17.8, 19.9] % ; Omega3 = 0.118 [0.055, 0.251] g/100g ; Selenium = 22.5 [7.8, 78.8] μg/100g ; VitaminA = 32.7 [10.1, 104.3] μg/100g ; Zinc = 2.53 [0.86, 5.11] mg/100g (wet weight);