Siganus virgatus   (Valenciennes,  1835) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Kesner-Reyes, K.

Size: 27.5 cm.

Color: In preserved specimens brownish. Ten to twelve narrow dark cross bands on snout, inter orbital space, and occiput, followed on nape by irregular short stripes and round dark spots, last named also scattered on anterior part of back. A dark brown band from chin through eye to origin of dorsal. A similar band, tapering inferiorly, from between third to fifth dorsal spines to above base of pectoral, these bands more or less bordered by black lines, blue in life. In life the space between the two bands is white, and a band of the same color borders the second dark band posteriorly. In preserved specimens the dark bands often fade. Dorsal and anal dusky, the soft portions of the fin with a light longitudinal basal band. Caudal dusky. Pectorals and ventrals yellowish.

Height 1.9-2.2, 2.4-2.6 in length with caudal. Head 3.6-3.7, 4.4-4.7 in length with caudal. Eye 3.1-3.5, 1.3-1.6 in snout, and 0.9-1.1 in slightly convex inter orbital space. Anterior nostril with a fleshy brim, higher posteriorly and suggesting a small flap. Cheek scales deciduous. First dorsal spine less than eye, fifth spine longest, equal to snout and half eye, last spine only slightly shorter. Soft anal high, angular, the median rays much the longer and slightly longer than longest spine. First anal spine longer than eye, third or third and fourth spines slightly longer than the others, as long as snout and half eye. soft anal similar to soft dorsal, but somewhat less deep. Pectorals slightly shorter than head, ventrals somewhat shorter than snout and eye. Caudal emarginate or slightly forked. Least height of caudal peduncle about equal to eye.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Amphacanthus virgatus Valenciennes, 1838
Teuthis virgata (Valenciennes, 1835)
Amphacanthus virgatus Cuvier and Valenciennes, 1835
Amphacanthus virgatus Schlegel and Muller, 1844
Amphacanthus virgatus Bleeker, 1850
Teuthis virgata Gunther, 1861
Amphacanthus virgatus Kner, 1867
Amphacanthus virgatus Jouan, 1866
Teuthis virgata Day, 1875
Siganus virgatus Jordan and Fowler, 1902
Siganus virgatus Evermann and Seale, 1907
Siganus virgatus Jordan and Richardson, 1908
Teuthis virgata Herre and Montalban, 1928
Siganus virgatus Fowler and Bean, 1929
Amphacanthus virgatus Whitley, 1929

Common Name (s)
• Variegate Rabbitfish (English)
• Virgate Rabbitfish (English)
• Double Barred Spinefoot (English)
• Barhead Spinefoot (English)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
(Marketed fresh, Ornamental fish)

Habitat:  Reef Associated, Coastal
Trophic Level:  Primary Consumer
Prey:  Algae


• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Andaman Islands INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, North Reef Island INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park 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 -
  • 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 -
  • Hutomo, M and Martosewojo, S (1977) The fishes of seagrass community on the west side of Burung island (Pari Islands, Seribu Islands) and their variations in abundance Marine Research in Indonesia 17 147-172 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • 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
  • Allen, GR and Mohammed, A (2003) Coral Reef Fishes of Indonesia Zoological Studies 42(1) 26299 Available at - Digital Information Resource Center, Pune.
  • 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
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51) FAO, Rome 4 Available at -
  • 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
  • Murty, VS (1996) Marine ornamental fishes of India Proceedings of the Seminar on Fisheries - A Multibillion Dollar Industry, Madras CMFRI 23-34 Available at -
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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 -

Page last updated on:2011-12-05

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