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Acanthurus lineatus, the lined surgeonfish, is a member of the family Acanthuridae, the surgeonfishes. Other common names include blue banded surgeonfish, blue-lined surgeonfish, clown surgeonfish, striped surgeonfish, and zebra surgeonfish.
This species reaches about 38 centimeters in length. Much of the body has black-edged blue and yellow stripes, and the top of the head is striped with yellow. The belly is grayish. The pectoral fins have darkened rays and the pelvic fins are yellow-brown with black margins. Individuals from around the Philippines vary in coloration. The sharp, forward-pointing spines on the caudal peduncle are venomous.
This species occurs in the Indian Ocean from East Africa to the western Pacific Ocean to the Great Barrier Reef, Japan, and many Pacific Islands. It is known from Hawaii, but it is probably not native there.
The fish is territorial, with a large male defending a feeding territory and a harem of females. The adults may also school, and they gather en masse during spawning. The juvenile is solitary. The fish is mostly herbivorous, but might eat crustaceans at times. Most of its diet is algae. It grazes during the day.
This species is of commercial and ornamental value. It is especially important among the reef fishes of American Samoa. In some areas it is heavily exploited, but it lives in many protected zones and in general it is widespread and common.
- Choat, J. H., et al. 2012. Acanthurus lineatus. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. Downloaded on 25 June 2013.
- Froese, R. and D. Pauly, Eds. Acanthurus lineatus. FishBase. 2011.
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