Pseudodax moluccanus   (Valenciennes,  1840) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Randall, J.E.

Size: 25-30 cm.

Color: In preserved specimens light reddish or brown. Dorsal with a dark narrow border and more or less reticulated with brown. Anal with a broad brown border. Caudal dark brown with a narrow white hind border. Ventrals dark brown. A dark brown spot at base of pectorals.

Height 2.5-2.7, 2.9-3.2 in length with caudal. Head 3.5, 4-4.2 in length with caudal. Height of head equal to its length. Eye 4.8-5.9, 1.7-2 in snout and 1.2-1.6 in convex inter orbital space. Mouth moderate, somewhat oblique. Corner of mouth almost below front border of eye. Two large, somewhat spatulate incisivi in front part of upper jaw, opposite to two similar ones in the lower jaw, which are followed by a much smaller incisivus on each side. Behind these teeth a ridge on the sides of both jaws, consisting of coalesced small teeth. Lips rather thick, plated and with an inner papillated fold. Preopercle smooth or finely crenulate along its hind and lower border. Six transverse rows of scales leave a broad inferior and a less broad posterior limb naked, the posterior limb tapering above. Scales on head beginning on temporal region immediately behind eye, somewhat behind eye on occiput, which is separated by 12 rows of scales from dorsal. Dorsal spines slender, the first equal to eye, the following increasing in length, the last as long as snout. The membranes between the spines not incised. Soft dorsal somewhat higher than spinous part, pointed behind. Anal beginning below 9th or 10th dorsal spines. First anal spine shortest, third longest, longer than eye. Soft anal similar to soft dorsal. Pectorals slightly pointed, sub equal to pointed ventrals and as long as head without snout. Caudal rounded. Caudal peduncle short and deep, its least depth equal to snout and eye. Body shape elongated. Dorsal spines (total): 11, Dorsal soft rays (total): 12, Anal spines: 3, Anal soft rays: 14.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportion.

Synonym (s)
Odax moluccanus Cuvier and Valenciennes, 1839
Pseudodax moluccanus Bleeker, 1862
Pseudodax moluccensis Gunther, 1862
Pseudodax moluccensis Cartier, 1874
Pseudodax moluccanus Day, 1877
Pseudodax moluccanus Fowler and Bean, 1928
Pseudodax moluccanus Fowler, 1928

Common Name (s)
• Chiseltooth Wrasse (English)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
(Fisheries, aquarium)

Habitat:  Reef Associated, Rocky
Trophic Level:  Secondary Consumer
Prey:  Zoobenthos, benthic algae/weeds, plants


• Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Nicobar Island (Lat: 7) (Long: 93) 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
  • 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
  • Randall, JE (1981) Two new species and six new records of labrid fishes from the Red Sea Senckenbergiana Maritima 13 79-109 Available at - ZOOR11800034217
  • 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 (1940) The fishes of the Indo-Australian Archipelago A. J. Reprints agency, Karol Bagh, New Delhi 8 508 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 -

Page last updated on:2010-04-22

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