Petroscirtes breviceps (Valenciennes, 1836)
Striped poison-fang blenny mimic
Petroscirtes breviceps
photo by Greenfield, J.

 Family:  Blenniidae (Combtooth blennies), subfamily: Blenniinae
 Max. size:  11 cm SL (male/unsexed)
 Environment:  reef-associated; depth range 1 - 15 m
 Distribution:  Indo-West Pacific: East Africa to Papua New Guinea, north to southern Japan, south to New Caledonia.
 Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 10-11; Dorsal soft rays (total): 17-21; Anal spines: 2-2; Anal soft rays: 17-21. Dark, broad stripe from snout through eye to caudal fin; stripe may be broken into segments (Ref. 4404). Highly variable in color and mimics Meiacanthus species (Ref. 48636).
 Biology:  Adults inhabit coastal reefs and estuaries to depths of about 10 m (Ref. 48636). May also be found up to 15 m depth in coastal and lagoon reefs in sandy and weedy areas among clumps of Sargassum or other seaweeds. They also take shelter and nests inside small-necked bottles and abandoned worm tubes or shells (Ref. 90102). They feed on small crustaceans, diatoms, and perhaps other plant material associated with such clumps. They use their fangs defensively and will not hesitate to bite if handled, thus, species of this genus are avoided by predators (Ref. 205). Oviparous. Males uses shells but also ring-top cans for nesting (Ref. 48636). Eggs are demersal and adhesive (Ref. 205), and are attached to the substrate via a filamentous, adhesive pad or pedestal (Ref. 94114). Larvae are planktonic, often found in shallow, coastal waters (Ref. 94114). Mimic of Meiacanthus grammistes, which like all species of that genus possesses a pair of large grooved fangs in the lower jaw with associated venom glands. These bites are used defensively and Papuan variety is also a possible mimic of Meiacanthus vittatus (Ref. 90102).
 IUCN Red List Status:   (Ref. 96402)
 Threat to humans:  traumatogenic
 Country info:   

 Entered by: Capuli, Estelita Emily - 15.07.92
 Modified by: Luna, Susan M. - 31.03.15
 Checked by: Binohlan, Crispina B. - 30.08.94

Source and more info: For personal, classroom, and other internal use only. Not for publication.

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