Pholidichthys leucotaenia

Last updated

Pholidichthys leucotaenia
Pholidichthys leucotaenia 1.jpg
Scientific classification Red Pencil Icon.png
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Cichliformes
Family: Pholidichthyidae
Genus: Pholidichthys
Species:
P. leucotaenia
Binomial name
Pholidichthys leucotaenia
Bleeker, 1856 [1]
Synonyms

Brotulophis argentistriatus Kaup, 1858 [1]

Pholidichthys leucotaenia, commonly known as the convict blenny/goby or the engineer blenny/goby, is a marine fish from the west-central Pacific Ocean. Despite it's common names, it is neither a blenny nor a goby, but is in fact one of two species in the family Pholidichthyidae.

Contents

Pholidichthys leucotaenia in a tank

Description

A small eel-shaped fish, it can grow up to 60 cm (24 in) in length. Juveniles resemble the striped catfish Plotosus lineatus , which is venomous, having a black body with a white dorsal stripe. As they develop, the stripe changes to white convict-style barring or spotting in the adult.

Ecology

Two P. leucotaenia Pholidichthys leucotaenia, acuario.jpg
Two P. leucotaenia

P. leucotaenia lives in shallow lagoons and on coastal reefs from the Philippines to the Solomon Islands. It is often found in schools under ledges or around coral heads. These schools swim in such tight formations, they resemble a single organism. Occasionally, the species is found in the aquarium trade, where it is known for disrupting all but the most stable structures. [2]

DNA analyses show this species to be neither a blenny nor a goby, but part of a separate fish family, the Pholidichthyidae. [3]

In the Solomon Islands, researchers under Eugenie Clark found juveniles emerging from holes in the seafloor and adjoining coral reefs. By day, these juveniles swim up to 50 m (55 yd) from their home burrows to feed on plankton. At the end of the day, all returned to the burrows, remarkable and unique behaviour for larval fish.

While their young are out feeding, the parents eject mouthfuls of debris from the burrows. In a single day as much as 3 kg (6.6 lb) of sand might be collected and spat out of the hole by the parents. [4] Research has revealed a maze of tunnels and chambers totaling a length of some 6 m. At night, young fish dangle by their mouths from the roof of the tunnels by thin mucous threads.

Adults may grow to almost 60 cm (24 in), [3] but never leave the tunnels to feed. They frequently take in mouthfuls of juveniles and spit them out again. An inspection of adult stomachs showed only a green slime. [3]

Related Research Articles

Gobiidae Family of fishes

Gobiidae is a family of bony fish in the order Gobiiformes, one of the largest fish families comprising more than 2,000 species in more than 200 genera, sometimes referred to as the "true gobies". Most of them are relatively small, typically less than 10 cm (3.9 in) in length. The Gobiidae includes some of the smallest vertebrates in the world, such as Trimmatom nanus and Pandaka pygmaea, Trimmatom nanus are under 1 cm long when fully grown, then Pandaka pygmaea standard length are 9mm (0.35 in),maximum known standard length are 11 mm (0.43 in). Some large gobies can reach over 30 cm (0.98 ft) in length, but that is exceptional. Generally, they are benthic, or bottom-dwellers. Although few are important as food for humans, they are of great significance as prey species for commercially important fish such as cod, haddock, sea bass, and flatfish. Several gobiids are also of interest as aquarium fish, such as the dartfish of the genus Ptereleotris. Phylogenetic relationships of gobiids have been studied using molecular data.

False cleanerfish Species of fish

The false cleanerfish is a species of combtooth blenny, a mimic that copies both the dance and appearance of Labroides dimidiatus, a similarly colored species of cleaner wrasse. It likely mimics that species to avoid predation, as well to occasionally bite the fins of its victims rather than consume parasites. Most veiled attacks occur on juvenile fish, as adults that have been attacked in the past may avoid or even attack A. taeniatus.

Black-ray goby Species of fish

Stonogobiops nematodes, the Filament-finned prawn-goby, the Antenna goby, the high-fin goby, the red-banded goby, the high-fin red-banded goby, the striped goby, the barber-pole goby, or the black-ray Goby, is a species of marine goby native to the Indian Ocean and western Pacific Ocean from the Seychelles to the Philippines and Bali.

<i>Nemateleotris magnifica</i> Species of fish

Nemateleotris magnifica, known by a variety of common names including fire goby, magnificent fire fish, fire dartfish, or red fire goby is a species of dartfish native to the Indian and Pacific oceans from the eastern coast of Africa to the Hawaiian Islands and from the Austral Islands north to the Ryukyu Islands. It is an inhabitant of coral reefs where it can be found at depths of from 6 to 70 metres. It is usually found just above the bottom, facing into the current, where it awaits its prey of small invertebrates.

Steinitz prawn goby Species of fish

Amblyeleotris steinitzi, Steinitz' prawn goby or simply Steinitz' goby, is a species of small fish in the family Gobiidae. It lives in association with an alpheid shrimp and is found from the Red Sea through the Indian Ocean to the western Pacific Ocean.

Leopard coral grouper Species of fish

The leopard coral grouper, also known as the common coral trout, leopard coral trout, blue-dotted coral grouper or spotted coral grouper, is a species of marine ray-finned fish, a grouper from the subfamily Epinephelinae which is part of the family Serranidae, which also includes the anthias and sea basses. It is found in the Western Pacific Ocean.

<i>Ostorhinchus compressus</i> Species of fish

Ostorhinchus compressus, commonly called the ochre-striped cardinalfish, blue-eyed cardinalfish or split banded cardinalfish, is a marine cardinalfish from the Indo-West Pacific from the family Apogonidae. It occasionally makes its way into the aquarium trade. It grows to a size of 12 cm in length.

Coral reef fish Fish which live amongst or in close relation to coral reefs

Coral reef fish are fish which live amongst or in close relation to coral reefs. Coral reefs form complex ecosystems with tremendous biodiversity. Among the myriad inhabitants, the fish stand out as colourful and interesting to watch. Hundreds of species can exist in a small area of a healthy reef, many of them hidden or well camouflaged. Reef fish have developed many ingenious specialisations adapted to survival on the reefs.

Coastal fish

Coastal fish, also called inshore fish or neritic fish, inhabit the sea between the shoreline and the edge of the continental shelf. Since the continental shelf is usually less than 200 metres (660 ft) deep, it follows that pelagic coastal fish are generally epipelagic fish, inhabiting the sunlit epipelagic zone. Coastal fish can be contrasted with oceanic fish or offshore fish, which inhabit the deep seas beyond the continental shelves.

Fish intelligence

Fish intelligence is "...the resultant of the process of acquiring, storing in memory, retrieving, combining, comparing, and using in new contexts information and conceptual skills" as it applies to fish.

Australian blenny Species of fish

The Australian blenny is a small marine blennioid fish of the genus Ecsenius. They are small and reddish brown with a white ventral side. Australian blennies inhabit the shallow marine waters of the tropics. They are often found along the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea of Australia.

Bluestriped fangblenny Species of fish

Plagiotremus rhinorhynchos, commonly called the bluestriped fangblenny, is a species of combtooth blenny found in coral reefs in the Pacific and Indian ocean. This species reaches a length of 12 centimetres (4.7 in) SL. It is also known as the bluestriped blenny, bluestriped sabretooth blenny, blunt-nose blenny, cleaner mimic, tube-worm blenny or the two-stripe blenny. They hide in deserted worm tubes or other small holes.

<i>Ecsenius axelrodi</i> Species of fish

Ecsenius axelrodi, known commonly as the Axelrod's clown blenny or the Axelrod's combtooth blenny, is a species of ray-finned fish in the family Blenniidae, the combtooth blennies. It is found in shallow water on coral reefs in the western central Pacific Ocean. It was first described by Victor Gruschka Springer in 1988 and named in honour of the American ichthyologist Herbert Richard Axelrod.

<i>Rhinogobiops</i> Genus of fishes

Rhinogobiops nicholsii, the blackeye goby, is a species of true goby in the family Gobiidae. It is the sole species classified under the genus Rhinogobiops. They are common inhabitants of coral reefs and rocky habitats along the Eastern Pacific Ocean coasts of Mexico, the United States, and Canada, although they are hardly noticed, as they often rest motionless near their shelters. Other common names for the species include bluespot goby and crested goby.

Blue blanquillo Species of fish

The blue blanquillo, Malacanthus latovittatus, also known as the banded blanquillo, striped blanquillo, false whiting, sand tilefish or eye of the sea, is a species of marine ray-finned fish, a tilefish belonging to the family Malacanthidae. It is found in the Indo-Pacific.

<i>Valenciennea helsdingenii</i> Species of fish

Valenciennea helsdingenii is a species of goby from the Indo-Pacific. It is commonly known as the twostripe goby, black-lined sleeper goby, or railway sleeper goby. It can grow up to a length of 25 cm (9.8 in) and is distinguishable by two prominent orange to black lines running longitudinally through its body.

<i>Amblygobius semicinctus</i> Species of fish

Amblygobius semicinctus, the halfbarred goby , is a species of goby from family Gobiidae.

<i>Trimma nasa</i> Species of fish

Trimma nasa, commonly called the nasal dwarfgoby or nasal pygmy goby, is a species of goby from the Western Pacific. They are small fish, averaging at around 2 cm (0.79 in) in length. They are bright orange and transparent yellow in life, with a white stripe running down from between the eyes to the upper lip and a dark brown spot at the base of the tail fin. They are usually found in large schools in the sloping or vertical drop-offs at coral reef edges.

Cichliformes Order of fishes

Cichliformes is an order of fishes. Its members were previously classified under the order Perciformes, but now many authorities consider it to be an independent order within the subseries Ovalentaria.

References

  1. 1 2 Bailly, N. (2010). Bailly N (ed.). "Pholidichthys leucotaenia Bleeker, 1856". FishBase . World Register of Marine Species . Retrieved 2011-12-20.
  2. Fenner, Bob. "Convict Blennies, Family Pholidichthyidae". Wet Web Media.com. Retrieved 2011-03-13.
  3. 1 2 3 Kaufmann, Carol (June 2005). "Research & Exploration: Clues From a Convict". National Geographic Interactive Edition. National Geographic Society.
  4. Life by BBC, 2009, pg 64, ISBN   978 1846076428