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Monacanthidae
FILEFISHES
Leatherjackets

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Cantherhines dumerilii
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Cantherhines dumerilii
Aluterus scriptus
© Copyright Andy Arrison, 2006 · 0
Aluterus scriptus

Aluterus
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Aluterus
Aluterus scriptus
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Aluterus scriptus

Aluterus monocerus
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Aluterus monocerus
Monacanthidae
© Copyright Ross Robertson, 2006 · 12
Monacanthidae
español

Overview
Main identification features
  • skin thin, rough
  • deep, compressed body
  • 1st dorsal fin : i-ii, 1st spine very long
  • small mouth, teeth strong
  • gill opening small
  • pelvic = spine or absent
FAMILY MONACANTHIDAE

FILEFISHES, LEATHERJACKETS

Filefishes are close relatives of triggerfishes (Balistidae), but differ from them by having more compressed bodies, generally a more pointed snout, a longer first dorsal spine, a very small second dorsal spine (sometimes absent), and no third dorsal spine; the teeth are similar, but not as stout, and there are six instead of eight in the outer row and six or less in the inner row; fins rays are umbranched; the scales, which are not conspicuous, have small setae that gives the skin its coarse texture; the pelvic fins are absent or reduce to a small, scaly spine.

Unlike the triggerfishes, most species are able to change color to match their surroundings, and some develop small skin flaps or tassles which further enhances their camouflage. They tend to be secretive, often hiding in seagrass, thick algal cover, gorgonians, or coral. Most exhibit omnivorous food habits, feeding on a great variety of benthic animal and plant life.

There are approximately 95 species from 31 genera worldwide; the majority are confined to cooler waters of temperate and subtropical seas. In our area there are three species, two circumtropical and one Indo-Pacific.


References
  • Allen , G.R. and Robertson, D.R., 1994., Fishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific., Crawford House Press Pty Ltd:1-332.
  • Allen , G.R. and Robertson, D.R., 1997., An Annotated Checklist of the fishes of Clipperton Atoll, Tropical Eastern Pacific., Revista de Biologia Tropical, 45:813-843.
  • Amezcua-Linares, F., 1996., Peces demersales de la plataforma continenta del Pacífico Central de Mexico., Instituto de Ciencias del Mar y Limnología, UNAM:184.
  • Briggs, J.C., 1960., Fishes of worldwide (circumtropical) distribution., Copeia, 1960:171-180.
  • Béarez, P., 1996., Lista de los Peces Marinos del Ecuador Continental., Revista de Biologia Tropical, 44:731-741.
  • Castro-Aguirre , J. L. , Balart , E. F. and Arvizu-Martínez, J., 1995., Contribución al conocimiento del origen y distribución de la ictiofauna del Golfo de California, México., Hidrobiologica, 5:57-78.
  • Castro-Aguirre, J.L. and Balart, E.F., 2002., La ictiofauna de las islas Revillagigedos y sus relaciones zoogeograficas, con comentarios acerca de su origen y evolucion. En: Lozano-Vilano, M. L. (Ed.). Libro Jubilar en Honor al Dr. Salvador Contreras Balderas., Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo León:153-170.
  • Chirichigno, N., 1998., Clave para identificar los peces marinos del Peru., Instituto del Mar del Peru, Informe., 44(2 Ed.):1-387.
  • De la Cruz Agüero, J., 1997., Catálogo de los peces Marinos de Baja California Sur., Centro Interdisciplinario de Ciencias Marinas:341.
  • Elorduy Garay , J. F. and Jiménez Gutiérrez, S. V., 2000., Metodologías para el estudio de los peces de arrecife. En Aburto Oropeza, O. y C. A. Sánchez Ortiz (Eds.). Recursos arrecifales del Golfo de California, estrategias de manejo para las especies marinas de ornato., Universidad Autónoma de Baja California Sur:72-82.
  • Findley, L.T., Hendrickx, M.E., Brusca, R.C., van der Heiden, A.M., Hastings, P.A., Torre, J., 2003., Diversidad de la Macrofauna Marina del Golfo de California, Mexico., CD-ROM versión 1.0. Projecto de la Macrofauna del Golfo .  Derechos reservados de los autores y Conservación Internacional.
  • Fischer , W. , Krup , F. , Schneider , W. , Sommer , C. , Carpenter , K. E. and Niem, V. H., 1995., Guia FAO para la Identificacion de Especies de para los fines de la Pesca. Pacifico Centro-Oriental. Volumen III. Vertebrados - Parte 2., FAO3:1201-1813.
  • Galván-Magaña, F., Abitia-Cárdenas, L.A., Rodríguez-Romero, J., Pérez-España, H., Chávez-Ramos, H., 1996., Systematics list of the fishes from Cerralvo island, Baja California Sur, Mexico., Ciencias Marinas, 22:295-311.
  • Galván-Magaña, F., Gutiérrez-Sánchez, F., Abitia-Cárdenas, L.A., Rodríguez-Romero, J., 2000., The distribution and affinities of the shore fishes of the Baja California Sur lagoons. In Aquatic Ecosystems of Mexico: Status and Scope. Eds. M. Manuwar, S.G. Lawrence, I.F. Manuwar & D.F. Malley. Ecovision World Monograph Series., Backhuys Publishers:383-398.
  • Garrison, G., 2000., Peces de la Isla del Coco., Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad:393.
  • Gotshall, D.W., 1996., Fishes of Rocas Alijos. In Rocas Alijos. Ed. R. W. Schmieder. Cornell Expeditions., Kluwer Academic Publishers: 347-354.
  • Grove , J.S. and Lavenberg, R. J., 1997., The fishes of the Galápagos islands., Stanford University Press:863 pp.
  • Hollard,., 1854., Monographie de la famille des Balistides. Suite 3., Ann. Sci. Nat., Paris (Zool.) (Sér. 4), 2:321-366.
  • Humann, P., 1993., Reef Fish Identification: Galapagos., New World Publishing:192pp.
  • Hunter, J. R. and Mitchell, C. T., 1966., Association of fishes with flotsam in the offshore waters of Central America., Fishery Bulletin, 66:13-29.
  • Jimenez-Prado, P., Béarez, P., 2004., Peces marinos del Ecuador continental / Marine fishes of continental Ecuador., SIMBIOE/NAZCA/IFEA tomo 1 y 2.
  • Jordan , and McGregor,., 1898., List of fishes collected at the Revillagigedo archipelago and neighboring islands., Rept. U.S. Fisheries Comm., 24:271-284.
  • Linnaeus, C., 1758., Systema Naturae, Ed. X. (Systema naturae per regna tria naturae, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata.) Holmiae., Systema Nat. ed. 10, 1:1-824.
  • Lopez , M. I. and Bussing, W. A., 1982., Lista provisional de los peces marinos de la Costa Rica., Revista de Biologia Tropical, 30(1):5-26.
  • Love, M.S., Mecklenburg, C.W., Mecklenburg, T.A., Thorsteinson, L.K., 2005., es of the West Coast and Alaska: a checklist of North Pacific and Artic Ocena species from Baja California to the Alaska-Yukon border., U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, Biological Resources Division, 288pp.
  • McCosker , J.E. and Rosenblatt, R.H., 1975., Fishes collected at Malpelo Island. In Graham, J.B. (ed.) The Biological Investigation of Malpelo Island, Colombia., Smithsonian Contrib. Zool., 176:91-93.
  • Meek , S.E. and Hildebrand, S.F., 1928., The marine fishes of Panama. Part III., Field Mus. Nat. Hist., Zool. Ser. Publ., XV:709-1045.
  • Nelson, J.S., 1984., Fishes of the World (Third edition)., John Wiley and Sons:523pp.
  • Osbeck, P., 1765., Reise nach Ostindien und China. German translation by J. G. Georgius. J. C. Koppe, Rostock., Reise Ostindien China, :1-552.
  • Ricker, K.E., 1959., Fishes collected from the Revillagigedo Islands during the 1954-1958 cruises of the "Marijean."., Univ. Brit. Columbia Inst. Fish., Mus. Contrib., 4:10pp.
  • Robertson , D.R. and Allen, G.A., 1996., Zoogeography of the shorefish fauna of Clipperton Atoll., Coral Reefs, 15:121-131.
  • Rosenblatt , R.H. , McCosker , J.E. and Rubinoff, I., 1972., Indo-west Pacific fishes from the Gulf of Chiriqui, Panama., Contrib. Sci. Nat. Hist. Mus. Los Angeles Co., 234:18pp.
  • Rubio , E.E. , Gutierrez , B. and Frank, R., 1987., Pesces de la Isla Gorgona., Centro de Publicaciones de la Facultad de Ciencias de la Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia., (1-315):1-315.
  • Rubio, E.A., 1986., Notas sobre la ictiofauna de la Isla de Gorgona, Colombia., Boletin Ecotropica. Univ. Bog. Jorge Tadeo Lozano, 13:86-112.
  • Rubio, E.A., 1988., Estudio taxonomico de la ictiofauna acompañante del camaron en areas costeras del Pacifico de Colombia., Memorias del VI Seminario Nacional de las Ciencias del Mar. Comisión Colombiana de Oceanografía. Bogota, Colombia., :169-183.
  • Rubio, E.A., 1990., Ictiofauna Indopacifica asociada a los corales de la Isla de Gorgona., Revista de Ciencias, 2:97-105.
  • Thomson , D.A. , Findley , L.T. and Kerstitch, A.N., 2000., Reef fishes of the Sea of Cortez., University of Texas Press(Revised Ed.):353.
  • Van der Heiden , A. M. and Findley, L. T., 1988., Lista de los peces marinos del sur de Sinaloa, México., Anales del Centro de Ciencias del Mar y Limnologia de la Universidad Autonoma Nacional de Mexico, 15:209-224.
  • Villareal-Cavazos, A., Reyes-Bonilla, H., Bermúdez-Almada, B. and Arizpe-Covarrubias, O., 2000., Los peces del arrecife de Cabo Pulmo, Golfo de California, México: Lista sistemática y aspectos de abundancia y biogeografía., Rev. Biol. Trop., 48:413-424.
  • Walker, B. W. and Baldwin, W. J., 1964., Provisional check list of fishes of the Revillagigedo islands., 18 pp.

Acknowledgements

I thank Ashley MacDonald and John Pickering, University of Georgia, for technical support in building this page.


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