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Hemigymnus melapterus  (Bloch, 1791)

Blackeye thicklip
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Image of Hemigymnus melapterus (Blackeye thicklip)
Hemigymnus melapterus
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: Hemigymnus: Greek, hemi = half + Greek, gymnos = naked (Ref. 45335).

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Marine; reef-associated; depth range 1 - 30 m (Ref. 9710), usually 5 - 30 m (Ref. 27115).   Tropical; 24°C - 28°C (Ref. 27115), preferred ?; 30°N - 36°S, 24°E - 138°W

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

Indo-Pacific: Red Sea and East Africa to Micronesia, Samoa (Ref. 2334), and Polynesia (Ref. 9823).

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 37.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 93095)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 10-11; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 11. This species is distinguished by the following characters: gill rakers 26-29; small juveniles dark brown, green on snout and interorbital, with a slightly oblique white bar from front of dorsal fin to abdomen, and 2 narrow pale yellowish bars below soft portion of dorsal fin that fade ventrally; larger juveniles have a white bar from origin of dorsal fin, passing beneath pectoral fin onto abdomen; head and body anterior to bar greyish green, posterior to bar black; posterior caudal peduncle and caudal fin yellow, often with 1 or 2 small black spots centrally near base: small females with body posterior to a curving demarcation between origins of dorsal and anal fins blackish with a narrow dark greenish bar on each scale, grading to yellow with blue-green spots posteriorly on caudal peduncle and fin; large females dark green posterior to oblique demarcation on body, the scales rimmed in black, with a vertical green line or spot on each scale; head and anterior body light green dorsally, pale blue-green ventrally, have irregular bands on snout and above eye, and a large complex marking behind eye; body of males posterior to demarcation dark green, each scale with narrow pale blue-green and black posterior margin; head green dorsally with irregular green to blue-green bands, including a blue ring around eye; cheek and operculum pinkish white with irregular light blue lines and spots, except for a large yellowish green blotch centrally on cheek without markings; lips and ventral part of head mainly pale blue; chest and abdomen pinkish white with a light blue spot or arc on scales (Ref. 93095).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Found in subtidal reef flats and lagoon and seaward reefs. Juveniles occur inshore, found among branching corals while adults found in areas of mixed sand, rubble, and coral (Ref. 9710). Large adults in deeper water (Ref. 48636). Maximum length beyond 45 cm TL is unlikely, with largest measured individual at 37 cm TL (Ref, Feeds mainly on small invertebrates, especially crustaceans, polychaete worms, mollusks and brittle stars (Ref. 9823). Diet changing from primarily demersal planktonic crustaceans to hard-shelled invertebrates with growth (Ref. 37816).

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

Oviparous, with distinct pairing during breeding (Ref. 205).

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

Randall, J.E., 2013. Review of the Indo-Pacific labrid fish genus Hemigymnus. J. Ocean Sci. Foundation 6:2-18. (Ref. 93095)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 115185)

CITES (Ref. 94142)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless




Human uses

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

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Internet sources

BHL | Cloffa | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | DiscoverLife | ECOTOX | Faunafri | Fishes of Iran | Fishtrace | GenBank(genome, nucleotide) | GloBI | GOBASE | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | MitoFish | National databases | Otolith Atlas of Taiwan Fishes | Public aquariums | PubMed | Reef Life Survey | Scirus | SeaLifeBase | Tree of Life | Wikipedia(Go, Search) | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoological Record

Estimates of some properties based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.6250   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01230 (0.00713 - 0.02124), b=3.06 (2.91 - 3.21), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  3.6   ±0.45 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Moderate to high vulnerability (50 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Very high.