Lethrinus harak   (Forsskal,  1775) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Randall, J.E.

Size: Maximum 50 cm; common 25 to 35 cm

Color: Olive-green dorsally, paler ventrally; scales on back sometimes with white center. A large elliptical blotch, often broadly edged in yellow, on side directly below lateral line and centered at a vertical near the posterior tip of the pectoral fin. Sometimes light blue dots border the lower rime of the eye and around the nostrils.

Head 2.8-3.1 in standard length, 3.6-3.9 in total length. Depth of body 2.7-2.8 in standard length, 3.4-3.5 in total length. Eye diameter 3.4-3.6 in head, 1.5-1.8 in snout and about equal to slightly convex interorbital space. Maxillary reaching to below nostrils. Canines small, posterior teeth rounded molars. Pectoral fin slightly shorter than head, ventral fin equal to snout and 2/3 eye diameter. Fourth dorsal fin spine longest, 1.3-1.4 of eye diameter. Third anal spine slightly longer than eye diameter.
Number of spines and rays in the dorsal fin: X, 9; number of spines and rays in the anal fin: III, 8; number of rays in the pectoral fin: ii, 11; number of spines and rays in the ventral fin: I, 5; number of scale rows along the lateral line: 46-47; number of horizontal scale rows usually counted from origin of the dorsal fin to the lateral line and from anal origin to the lateral line: 5 ½ +1+15; gill raker count: 4-5+5.

Max. age reported: 15 years

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Sparus harak Bloch & Schneider, 1801
Lethrinus azureus Valenciennes, 1830
(Junior synonym)
Lethrinus bleekeri Klunzinger, 1884
(Junior synonym)
Lethrinus bonhamensis Gunther, 1874
(Junior synonym)
Lethrinus johnii Castelnau, 1873
(Junior synonym)
Lethrinus papuensis Alleyne & Macleay, 1877
(Junior synonym)
Lethrinus rhodopterus Bleeker, 1852
(Junior synonym)
Sciaena harak Forsskal, 1775
(Senior synonym)
Lethrinus harak Smith, 1959
Lethrinus rhodopterus Weber and de Beaufort, 1936

Common Name (s)
• Thumbprint Emperor (English)
• Blackspot Emperor (English)
• Filolu (Mahl)
• Makarimas (Mahl)
• Chuttommetti (Malayalam)
• Metti (Malayalam)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
(Fisheries, marketed fresh)

Habitat:  Reef Associated, Estuarine, Sandy, Coastal
Trophic Level:  Secondary Consumer
Prey:  Polychaetes, crustaceans, mollusks, echinoderms and small fish


• Lakshadweep, Agatti INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Amini INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Minicoy INDIA
• Red Sea
• Lakshadweep INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Port Blair INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Vedalai INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Great Nicobar Island INDIA (Record: 08/2000-07/2003)
• Andaman Sea INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, North Reef Island INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Gulf of Mannar INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Rao, DV; Devi, K and Rajan, PT (2000) An account of ichthyofauna of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Bay of Bengal Occasional paper no 178 Records of the Zoological Survey of India ZSI, Calcutta 1-434 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • James, C; O'Farrell, S; Hamylton, S; Ingwersen, C and Walker, R The coral reef resources of Mu Ko Surin national park, Thailand Coral Cay Conservation Available at - www.coralcay.org
  • Rouphael, T; Turak, E and Jon, B Seagrasses and mangroves of Yemen's Red Sea 41-89
  • Hussain, SM Brief report on biodiversity in the coastal areas of Pakistan p 113
  • Ohman, M; Rajasuriya, A and Olafsson, E (1997) Reef fish assemblages in north western Sri Lanka: Distribution patterns and influences of fishing practises Enviornmental Biology of Fishes Kluwer Academic Publishers 49 45-61
  • Heemstra, E; Heemstra, P; Smale, M; Hoopers, T and Pelicier, D (2004) Preliminary checklist of coastal fishes from the Mauritian island of Rodrigues Journal of natural history Taylor and Francis 38(23-24) 3315 - 3350 Available at - taylorandfrancis.metapress.com/ index/
  • Letourneur, Y; Chabanet, P; Durville, P; Taquet, M; Teissier, E; Parmentier, M; Quero, JC and Pothin, K (2004) An updated checklist of the marine fish fauna of Reunion Island, south-western Indian Ocean Cybium 28(3) 199-216
  • Al-Akel, AS and Shamsi, MJK (1995) Estimation of fillet/food calorie ratio as an index of energy assimilation in some of the marinewater fishes from Saudi Arabia Arab Gulf Journal of Scientific Research 13(2) 379-388 Available at - ZOOR13200071363
  • Torao, S (1978) A synopsis of the Sparoid fish genus Lethrinus, with the description of a new species University of Tokyo Press 25569 Available at - CMFRI, Kochi
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at - http://www.fishbase.org
  • Jones, S and Kumaran, M (1980) Fishes of the Laccadive Archipelago The Nature Conservation and Aquatic Sciences Service, Trivandrum, Kerala 760 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at - http://www.marinespecies.org
  • Talwar, PK and Kacker, RK (1984) Commercial sea fishes of India ZSI, Calcutta 997 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51) FAO, Rome 2 Available at - http://www.fao.org/docrep/009/ad468e/ad468e00.HTM#Contents
  • Fischer, W and Whitehead, PJP (1974) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Eastern Indian Ocean - Fishing Area 57 and Western Central Pacific - Fishing Area 71 FAO, Rome 2 Available at - http://www.fao.org/docrep/009/e9163e/e9163e00.htm
  • Rajaram, R; Srinivasan, M; Khan, SA and Kannan, L (2004) Ichthyofaunal diversity of great Nicobar Island, Bay of Bengal Journal of Indian fisheries association 31 13-26 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Rajaram, R and Nedumaran, T (2009) Ichthyofaunal diversity in great Nicobar biosphere reserve, Bay of Bengal Journal of Threatened Taxa Wildlife Information Liaison Development Society 1(3) 166-169 Available at - http://threatenedtaxa.org/ZooPrintJournal/2009/March/o198526iii09166-169.pdf
  • Silas, EG and Toor, HS. (1961) On some new records of Pigface Breams (Family Lethrinidae : Pisces) from the Andaman sea Journal of the Marine Biological Association of India The Marine Biological Association of India, Cochin, India 3(1&2) 208-214 Available at - http://eprints.cmfri.org.in/908/1/Article_20.pdf
  • Rao, GC; Rao, DV and Devi, K (1994) A faunal exploration of the North Reef Island sanctuary, North Andaman Journal of the Andaman Science Association Andaman Science Association, Port Blair 10(1&2) 68-81 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Varghese, M; Manisseri, MK; Ramamurthy, N; Geetha, PM; Thomas, VJ and Gandhi, A (2011) Coral reef fishes of Gulf of Mannar, S.E of India Fishing Chimes CMFRI 31(1) 38-40 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Talwar, PK (1990) Fishes of Andaman and Nicobar Islands: A synoptic survey Journal of the Andaman Science Association Andaman Science Association, Port Blair 6(2) 71-102 Available at - NIO,Goa
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at - eprints.cmfri.org.in/3975/1/Special_Publication_No_12_Revised.pdf

Page last updated on:2011-11-30

Back to Search