RSS Lutjanus xanthopinnis, a new snapper species described from the Indo-Pacific

MASA Admin

8 May 2007
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Lutjanus xanthopinnis is a new species of snapper that has just been described and joins a large complex of snappers with a pattern of yellow lines. Generally speaking, the yellow finned snapper looks more like something you might eat than keep in a home aquarium, but it does have a subtle beauty about it, in the right light.

The new species Lutjanus xanthopinnis is wide ranging in the Indo-Pacific having previously been confused with Lutjanus madras which is redescribed in the paper, and now has a restricted range in the Indian Ocean. However, both Lutjanus xanthopinnis and L. madras have been confirmed to co-occur in Sri Lanka.


A live specimen of the yellow finned snapper photographed in Brunei by Gerald Allen.

The yellow fin snapper, L. xanthopinnis, differs from the Indian Snapper, L. madras, not only in geographic range but also in meristics and color. L. xanthopinnis has “mostly uniform thin yellow to brownish stripes on the body on adults, missing the well-contrasted and much broader mid-lateral stripe characteristic of L. madras.

The description of the yellow finned snapper brings the total number of known species of Lutjanus to 71. L. xanthopinnis is described by Iwatsuki, Tanaka & Allen in the latest issue of the Journal of Ocean Science Foundation. [JSOF]


The holotype of Lutjanus xanthopinnis freshly preserved from Japan. Photo F. Tanaka

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