Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Acanthuriformes
(Surgeonfishes) > Pomacanthidae
Etymology: Pomacanthus: Greek, poma, -atos = cover, operculum + Greek, akantha = thorn (Ref. 45335). More on author: Linnaeus.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; non-migratory; depth range 2 - 30 m (Ref. 9626), usually - m (Ref. ). Tropical; 22°C - 28°C; 44°N - 23°S, 98°W - 34°W
Western Atlantic: New England, USA to the vicinity of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean (Ref. 26938).
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 22.6  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 60.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 3797); common length : 45.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 3797); max. published weight: 1.8 kg (Ref. 40637)
soft rays: 23 - 25. Pale gray around mouth, and pale gray margin on caudal fin. Inside of pectoral fin yellow (Ref. 26938). Juveniles are black with two light yellow bars on body and three on head; caudal fin yellow with a vertically elongate, nearly rectangular or hemispherical black spot in middle (Ref. 13442).
Common in coral reefs, usually solitary, occasionally in pairs. Juveniles are part-time cleaners. Feed mainly on sponges, but also takes tunicates, algae, zoantharians, gorgonians, hydroids, bryozoans, and seagrasses. Oviparous (Ref. 240), monogamous (Ref. 52884). Flesh reported to be of excellent quality (Ref. 3797); marketed fresh and salted (Ref. 5217). Friendly toward divers (Ref. 9710). Have been reared in captivity (Ref. 35419).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Monogamous mating is observed as both facultative and social (Ref. 52884).
Allen, G.R., 1985. Butterfly and angelfishes of the world. Vol. 2. 3rd edit. in English. Mergus Publishers, Melle, Germany. (Ref. 4858)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 124695)
Threat to humans
Reports of ciguatera poisoning (Ref. 30303)
Fisheries: minor commercial; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 23.8 - 28.1, mean 27.3 °C (based on 849 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5001 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.03548 (0.01956 - 0.06438), b=2.90 (2.74 - 3.06), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.2 ±0.1 se; based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Very Low, minimum population doubling time more than 14 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): High to very high vulnerability (67 of 100) .
Nutrients (Ref. 124155
): Calcium = 25.6 [15.1, 40.9] mg/100g ; Iron = 0.405 [0.251, 0.660] mg/100g ; Protein = 18.9 [17.7, 20.0] % ; Omega3 = 0.113 [0.073, 0.171] g/100g ; Selenium = 31.6 [17.2, 58.2] μg/100g ; VitaminA = 69.8 [19.9, 230.0] μg/100g ; Zinc = 0.969 [0.641, 1.449] mg/100g (wet weight);