Siganus fuscescens   (Houttuyn,  1782) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: CSIRO

Size: 35-40 cm.

Color: Body olive green or brown above, silvery below. Fish frequently with a dark patch below origin of lateral line.

Height 2.4-2.5, 2.9-3.1 in length with caudal. Head 4-4.1, 4.8-5 in length with caudal. Eye 3.1-3.5, 1.3-1.5 in snout and equal to slightly convex inter orbital space. Anterior nostril with a short flap, much shorter than distance between anterior and posterior nostrils in adult, but longer in young ones. Cheeks naked or with a few scales imbedded in the skin. First dorsal spine equal to eye, seventh spine longest, about equal to snout and half eye. Last spine as long as first one. Soft dorsal rounded, the median rays not much longer than the anterior ones, somewhat more than snot, the posterior rays decreasing gradually in height, the last one less than eye. First anal spine slightly longer than eye, fourth spine longest, equal to snout. Last spine slightly longer than first one. Soft anal slightly rounded, less deep than soft dorsal. Pectorals half length of snout shorter than head. Ventrals about as long as snout and half eye. Caudal forked, lunate when the fin is expanded. Least depth of caudal peduncle 1.3 in its length, 1.2-1.4 in eye. Adults become mottled when frightened. Slender, pungent, venomous spines. Preopercular angle 89A°-95A°. Lower half to 2 or 3 of cheeks commonly covered with weak, scattered scales. Midline of thorax between pelvic ridges. Differs from S. argenteus in details of coloration and less deeply forked tail. Likely to be confused with closely related species. Dorsal spines (total): 13 - 13, Dorsal soft rays (total): 10 - 10, Anal spines: 7, Anal soft rays: 9, Vertebrae: 13. Anterolateral glandular groove with venom gland.

Dioecious, external fertilisation, nonguarders, open water or substratum egg scatterers.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Centrogaster fuscescens Houttuyn, 1782
(Senior synonym)
Amphacanthus fuscescens Cuvier and Valenciennes, 1835
Amphacanthus fuscescens Schlegel, 1845
Amphacanthus fuscescens Bleeker, 1857
Teuthis fuscescens Klunzinger, 1880
Siganus fuscescens Jordan and Fowler, 1902
Teuthis fuscescens Steindachner and Doderlein, 1883
Teuthis fuscescens Franz, 1910
Siganus fuscescens Seale, 1910
Teuthis fuscescens Jordan and Hubbs, 1925
Teuthis fuscescens Herre and Montalban, 1928
Teuthis fuscescens P. J. Schmidt, 1930
Siganus fuscescens Fowler, 1938
Amphacanthus albopunctatus Temminck & Schlegel, 1845
(Junior synonym)
Amphacanthus aurantiacus Temminck & Schlegel, 1845
(Junior synonym)
Amphacanthus fuscescens (Houttuyn, 1782)
(Senior synonym)
Amphacanthus maculosus Quoy & Gaimard, 1825
(Junior synonym)
Amphacanthus margaritiferus Valenciennes, 1835
(Junior synonym)
Amphacanthus nebulosus Quoy & Gaimard, 1825
(Junior synonym)
Amphacanthus oramin (non Schneider, 1801)
(Misapplied name)
Amphacanthus siganus (non Forsskal, 1775)
(Misapplied name)
Siganus albopunctatus (Temminck & Schlegel, 1845)
(Junior synonym)
Siganus canaliculatus (non Park, 1797)
(Misapplied name)
Siganus consobrinus Ogilby, 1912
(Junior synonym)
Siganus margaritiferus (Valenciennes, 1835)
(Junior synonym)
Siganus nebulosus (Quoy & Gaimard, 1825)
(Junior synonym)
Siganus oramin (non Schneider, 1801)
(Misapplied name)
Siganus rivulatus (non Forsskal, 1775)
(Misapplied name)
Siganus spinus (non Linnaeus, 1758)
(Misapplied name)
Teuthis albopunctata (Temminck & Schlegel, 1845)
(Junior synonym)
Teuthis fuscescens (Houttuyn, 1782)
(Senior synonym)
Teuthis javus (non Linnaeus, 1766)
(Misapplied name)
Teuthis nebulosa (Quoy & Gaimard, 1825)
(Junior synonym)
Teuthis oramin (non Schneider, 1801)
(Misapplied name)
Theutis margaritifera (Valenciennes, 1835)
(Junior synonym)

Common Name (s)
• Sandy Spinefoot (English)
• Pinspotted Spinefoot (English)
• Mottled Spinefoot (English)
• Fuscescens Rabbitfish (English)
• Dusky Spinefoot (English)
• Dusky Rabbitfish (English)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
Cultured:  Yes

Habitat:  Reef Associated
Trophic Level:  Secondary Consumer
Prey:  Zoobenthos, detritus, plants, other benthic invertebrates, phytoplankton, benthic algae/weeds, blue green algae


• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Andaman Islands (Lat: 10) (Long: 93) INDIA
• Bay of Bengal (Lat: 15) (Long: 90) 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
  • Devi, K and Rao, DV (2003) Poisonous and venomous fishes of Andaman Islands, Bay of Bengal Occasional paper no 211 Records of The Zoolgical Survey of India ZSI, Calcutta 25934 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre Available at -
  • Devi, K and Rao, DV (2003) A field guide to the fishes of Acanthuridae (surgeonfishes) and Siganidae (rabbitfishes) of Andaman and Nicobar Islands 42 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 -
  • Kuo, RS and Shao, KT (1999) Species composition of fish in the coastal zones of the Tsengwen estuary, with descriptions of five new records from Taiwan Zoological Studies 38(4) 391-404 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at -
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Beaufort, LF and Chapman, WM (1951) The fishes of the Indo-Australian Archipelago A. J. Reprints agency, Karol Bagh, New Delhi 9 484 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Rao, DV and Devi, Kamlahttp:// (1996) Notes on rabbit fishes (Family: Siganidae) of Andaman and Nicobar islands Journal of Andaman Science Association Andaman Science Association, Central Agricultural Research Institute, Andaman, India 12 (1-2) 84-88 Available at - NIO, Goa

Page last updated on:2011-10-07

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