Geographical distribution[ edit ] The Atlantic tripletail is the only fish in the family Lobotidae that can be found in the Atlantic Ocean. It is, however, distributed across tropical seas especially Indonesia region which is commonly found in wet market in Pontianak, West Borneo. They are rarely found north of Chesapeake Bay. They are found on the Gulf Coast from April to October and then migrate to warmer waters during winter. Habitat[ edit ] Atlantic tripletails are found coastally in most, but not all, tropical and subtropical seas.
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Species — surinamensis Common Names English language common names are Atlantic tripletail, black grunt, black perch, bouyfish, conchy leaf, dusky tripletail, dusky triple-tail, flasher, sleepfish, triple tail, tripletail, and triple-tail. Importance to Humans A few tons of tripletails are fished commercially on the east and west coasts of Florida, and marketed fresh, frozen, or salted. They are mainly caught using haul seines, gill nets and line gear.
They are common in driftnet catches of tuna along the edge of the continental shelf. This fish is infrequently targeted by recreational fishers. The IUCN is a global union of states, governmental agencies, and non-governmental organizations in a partnership that assesses the conservation status of species. Geographical Distribution World distribution map for the tripletail The tripletail is found from Massachusetts and Bermuda to Argentina, including both the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea.
It is rare north of the Chesapeake Bay. They are found on the Gulf coast April through early October and migrate to the south during the winter months.
There has been one report of a tripletail caught off the coast of California. The tripletail is not very abundant in any particular location. Habitat The tripletail is found coastally in most tropical and subtropical seas. The tripletail is a semi-migratory pelagic fish. It is normally solitary, but under some conditions the tripletail may form schools. In the summer, they can be found in bays, sounds and estuaries. Juveniles are often found swimming under patches of Sargassum algae.
Adults are normally found in waters of the Gulf of Mexico, but may occur in passes, inlets, and bays near river mouths. The tripletail is often found around ship wrecks, supports of beacons, the pilings of jetties, and sea buoys.
The tripletail is the only member of its family Lobotidae found in the Atlantic Ocean. The tripletail has a compressed and deep body, with a triangular-shaped head. The eyes are relatively small, and its mouth is large. The bases of both its dorsal and anal fins are scaled, and its pectoral fins are shorter than its pelvic fins. The tripletail has distinctively large and rounded soft dorsal, caudal, and anal fins.
This characteristic gave rise to the common name. Coloration The juveniles are mottled with yellow, brown and black. Lying on its side at the water surface, a young tripletail looks like a floating mangrove leaf. The juveniles have white pectoral fins and a white margin on the caudal fin. Adult tripletails have varied mottled color patterns, ranging from dark brown to a reddish brown or brown with a tint of gray.
Dentition The tripletail has no teeth on the vomer and palatine. Line drawing of a tripletail. However, the average weight is between 2. The tripletail grows fastest in its first year. This may be an adaptation to the high predation rate of small fishes in the epipelagic zone.
The transition from a larval tripletail to a juvenile occurs between 0. Food Habits The tripletail is opportunistic, feeding on a variety of prey including small finfish such as gulf menhaden Brevoortia patronus , Atlantic bumper Chloroscombrus chrysurus and anchovies Anchoa spp. Invertebrate prey include blue crabs Callinectes sapidus and brown shrimp Farfantepenaeus aztecus , as well as many other benthic crustaceans.
Reproduction Spawning primarily occurs in the summer along both the Atlantic and the U. Gulf of Mexico coasts, with peaks during the months of July and August. Larval tripletails go though four levels of development; preflexion, flexion, postflexion, and transformation.
By the time the larva reach 0. The larval forms of tripletail resemble those of boar fishes, some jacks, spade fishes and bigeyes. Blacktip Shark. Parasites Parasites of the tripletail include the copepods Anuretes heckelii which is found on the wall of the branchial cavities and Lernanthropus pupa that is parasitic on the gill filaments. Another known parasite of the tripletail is Scianophilus tenius.
Taxonomy The tripletail was first described by Bloch as Holocentrus surinamensis in Later in , the tripletail was referred to by Bloch as Lobotes surinamensis, the name still in use today. The tripletail was given its species name because it was discovered in Surinam, in northern South America.
It has appeared in literature under a variety of synonyms. Although these names are no longer valid, they included Bodianus triourus Bloch , Lobotes erate Cuvier , Lobotes farkharii Cuvier , Lobotes somnolentus Cuvier , Lobotes citrinus Richardson , Lobotes incurvus Richardson , Lobotes auctorum Gunther , Labotes pacificus Gilbert , and Lobotes pacificus Gilbert Prepared by: Tina Perrotta.