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Halichoeres scapularis  (Bennett, 1832)

Zigzag wrasse
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Native range | All suitable habitat | Point map | Year 2100
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Halichoeres scapularis   AquaMaps   Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Image of Halichoeres scapularis (Zigzag wrasse)
Halichoeres scapularis
Male picture by Randall, J.E.

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes (Perch-likes) > Labridae (Wrasses) > Corinae
Etymology: Halichoeres: Greek, als, alis = salt + Greek, choiros = pig (Ref. 45335).

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Marine; reef-associated; depth range 1 - 20 m (Ref. 90102).   Tropical; 32°N - 24°S

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Indo-West Pacific: Red Sea and East Africa (Ref. 2334) to Papua New Guinea, north to Japan, south to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 20.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 30573)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 11; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 11. The initial phase is olivaceous to brownish yellow dorsally, white ventrally, with a black zigzag stripe running from eye to upper caudal peduncle (continuing anteriorly as a yellow stripe from the eye to the snout). This primary phase is similar to H. trimaculatus except for the black zigzag stripe along its back (Ref. 1602). The terminal phase is green, the zigzag stripe lavender-pink with its anterior portion overlaid by a black blotch.

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Common in shallow lagoons or bays; usually over sand, rubble, or seagrass bottom (Ref. 41878), rather than on coral reefs. May be found in groups (Ref. 90102). Usually solitary and aggressive towards members of its own species. Feeds on small crustaceans by picking them off the sandy bottom (Ref. 5503).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205). Pelagic spawner (Ref. 32193).

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator : Westneat, Mark | Collaborators

Randall, J.E., G.R. Allen and R.C. Steene, 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, Hawaii. 506 p. (Ref. 2334)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 115185)

CITES (Ref. 115941)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless




Human uses

Fisheries: minor commercial; aquarium: commercial
FAO(Publication : search) | FisheriesWiki | Sea Around Us

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Estimates of some properties based on models

Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969): 26.2 - 29.3, mean 28.6 (based on 2756 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01023 (0.00585 - 0.01791), b=3.14 (2.99 - 3.29), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  3.5   ±0.50 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (K=0.6).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Low vulnerability (23 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Very high.