Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Lethrinidae
(Emperors or scavengers) > Monotaxinae
Etymology: Monotaxis: Greek, monos = one + Greek, taxis = disposition (Ref. 45335). More on author: Forsskål.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; non-migratory; depth range 1 - 100 m (Ref. 9710), usually 5 - 30 m (Ref. 9775). Tropical; 35°N - 30°S, 32°E - 122°W
Indo-Pacific: Red Sea and East Africa to the Hawaiian Islands and southeastern Oceania, north to Japan, south to Australia.
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 27.5, range 18 - ? cm
Max length : 60.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 2295); common length : 40.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 2295); max. published weight: 5.9 kg (Ref. 40637)
soft rays: 9. This species is distinguished by the following characters: body oblong, greatest body depth of adults about 2.2 in SL; head profile strongly convex in front of eye, the snout sloping steeply; eye large 2.7 (juveniles) to 3.8 (adults) in HL; inner surface of the pectoral fin base is densely scaled; pectoral rays usually 14; caudal fin forked with pointed tips; lateral line scales 44-47; scale rows above lateral line (to base of middle dorsal spines) 5, below (to origin of anal fin) 13.5; side of jaw with row of 5-7 molariform teeth. Color of adult silvery grey with narrow dark scale margins, lips yellowish, a large black blotch covering pectoral fin axil, quick to assume pattern of 4 broad, blackish bars on body, the pale interspaces covering 3-4 scale rows; juveniles with black bar through eye, body with 3 dark brown to blackish bars with the 2 posterior bars extending onto the dorsal fin, and each lobe of caudal fin with an orange band (Ref. 2295, 90102).
Found in sand and rubble areas near coral reefs. Solitary fish are often encountered, but large adults usually form aggregations of up to about 50 individuals (Ref. 9710). Solitary or in groups (Ref. 90102). Benthopelagic (Ref. 58302). Nocturnal feeders (Ref. 9710). Feed mainly on gastropods, ophiuroids, and echinoids. Pagurids and brachyuran crabs, polychaetes, tunicates, and holothurians are consumed in lesser quantities. Caught mainly with gillnets, traps, spears, and handlines (Ref. 2295). Marketed fresh (Ref. 9775). Ciguatoxic in Marshall Is. (Ref. 171).
Carpenter, K.E. and G.R. Allen, 1989. FAO Species Catalogue. Vol. 9. Emperor fishes and large-eye breams of the world (family Lethrinidae). An annotated and illustrated catalogue of lethrinid species known to date. FAO Fish. Synop. 125(9):118 p. Rome: FAO. (Ref. 2295)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 118484)
Threat to humans
Reports of ciguatera poisoning (Ref. 4690)
Fisheries: commercial; gamefish: yes; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 24.6 - 29.1, mean 28 °C (based on 1440 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.7500 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.02138 (0.01621 - 0.02821), b=2.95 (2.87 - 3.03), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.4 ±0.0 se; based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate vulnerability (44 of 100) .