Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Common seadragon - Wikipedia

  1. Here's what a Common seadragon looks like that doesn't have all the appendages that look like kelp or leaves:

    begin quote from:

    Common seadragon - Wikipedia

    Common seadragon. Common seadragon or weedy seadragon (Phyllopteryx taeniolatus) is a marine fish related to the seahorse. Adult common seadragons are a reddish colour, with yellow and purple markings; they have small leaf-like appendages that resemble kelp fronds providing camouflage and a number of short spines for protection.
    • Common seadragon

      From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
      Common seadragon
      Phyllopteryx taeniolatus1.jpg
      Phyllopteryx taeniolatus in Cabbage Tree Bay, Sydney, Australia
      Scientific classification e
      Kingdom: Animalia
      Phylum: Chordata
      Class: Actinopterygii
      Order: Syngnathiformes
      Family: Syngnathidae
      Genus: Phyllopteryx
      Species: P. taeniolatus
      Binomial name
      Phyllopteryx taeniolatus
      (Lacepède, 1804)
      Phyllopteryx tæniolatus range map.PNG
      Phyllopteryx taeniolatus range
      Common seadragon or weedy seadragon (Phyllopteryx taeniolatus) is a marine fish related to the seahorse. Adult common seadragons are a reddish colour, with yellow and purple markings; they have small leaf-like appendages that resemble kelp fronds providing camouflage and a number of short spines for protection.[2][3] Males have narrower bodies and are darker than females.[3] Seadragons have a long dorsal fin along the back and small pectoral fins on either side of the neck, which provide balance.[4] Common seadragons can reach 45 cm (18 in) in length.
      The common seadragon is the marine emblem of the Australian State of Victoria.[5]



      The common seadragon is endemic to Australian waters of the Eastern Indian Ocean and the South Western Pacific Ocean. It can be found approximately between Port Stephens (New South Wales) and Geraldton, Western Australia, as well as Tasmania.[6]
      Common Seadragon, Phyllopteryx taeniolatus, from the Sketchbook of fishes by William Buelow Gould, 1832


      The common seadragon inhabits coastal waters down to at least 50 m (160 ft) deep. It is associated with rocky reefs, seaweed beds, seagrass meadows and structures colonised by seaweed.[7]


      These fish are slow-moving and rely on their camouflage as protection against predation; they drift in the water and with the leaf-like appendages resemble the swaying seaweed of their habitat.[3] They lack a prehensile tail that enables similar species to clasp and anchor themselves.
      Individuals are observed either on their own or in pairs; feeding on tiny crustaceans and other zooplankton by sucking prey into their toothless mouths.[3] Like seahorses, seadragon males are the sex that cares for the developing eggs. Females lay around 120 eggs onto the brood patch located on the underside of the males' tail.[3] The eggs are fertilised and carried by the male for around a month before the hatchlings emerge.[3]
      Seadragons, seahorses and pipefish are among the few known species where the male carries the eggs. The young are independent at birth, beginning to eat shortly after.[8] Common seadragons take about 28 months to reach sexual maturity, and may live for up to six years.[9]
      Common Seadragon
      Mating in captivity is relatively rare since researchers have yet to understand what biological or environmental factors trigger them to reproduce. The survival rate for young common seadragons is low in the wild, but it is about 60% in captivity.[10]
      The Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, California and the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga, Tennessee[11] in the USA, and the Melbourne Aquarium in Melbourne, Australia[12] are among the few facilities in the world to have successfully bred common seadragons in captivity, though others occasionally report egg laying.[13] In March 2012 the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, USA, announced a successful breeding event of common seadragons.[14] As of July 2012, the Monterey Bay Aquarium has also successfully bred and hatched out baby common seadragons on exhibit.[15]


      The common seadragon is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List 2006.[16] While the common seadragon is a desired species in the international aquarium trade, the volume of wild-caught individuals is small and therefore not currently a major threat. Instead, habitat loss and degradation due to human activities and pollution threaten common seadragons most.
      The loss of suitable seagrass beds, coupled with natural history traits that make them poor dispersers, put the future of seadragon populations at risk. This species is not at present a victim of bycatch or a target of trade in Traditional Chinese Medicine, two activities which are currently a threat to many related seahorse and pipefish populations.[17][18]


      It is illegal to take or export these species in most of the states within which they occur.[3] A database of seadragon sightings, known as 'Dragon Search' has been established with support from the Marine and Coastal Community Network (MCCN), Threatened Species Network (TSN) and the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS), which encourages divers to report sightings.[3] Monitoring of populations may provide indications of local water quality and seadragons could also become an important 'flagship' species for the often-overlooked richness of the unique flora and fauna of Australia’s south coast.[3]
      Weedy Seadragon
      Captive breeding programs are in place for the weedy seadragon, headed up by Sea Life Melbourne Aquarium. The dragon has been difficult to breed in captivity, though in 2015 research observing the creatures in the wild and trying to replicate the conditions in captivity had researchers making changes to the light, water temperature and water flow proving to be key.
      In December 2015 the Melbourne aquarium had eggs hatch and the aquarium's weedy seadragon population significantly increased, reporting in March 2016 that 45 fry were still going strong—an outcome which represents a 95 percent survival rate.[19]

      Related species

      The common seadragon is in the subfamily Syngnathinae, which contains all pipefish. It is most closely related to the other member of its genus, the ruby seadragon (Phyllopteryx dewysea), and also the leafy seadragon (Phycodurus eques). Haliichthys taeniophorus, sometimes referred to as the "ribboned seadragon" is not closely related (it does not form a true monophyletic clade with weedy and leafy seadragons).[20]
      The common seadragon was previously the only member of its genus until the description of the ruby seadragon in 2015.[21]

      Ongoing research

      In the November 2006 issue of National Geographic magazine, marine biologist Greg Rouse is reported as investigating the DNA variation of the two seadragon species across their ranges.


      This article incorporates text from the ARKive fact-file "Common seadragon" under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License and the GFDL.

    • Connolly, R. (2006). "Phyllopteryx taeniolatus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN. 2006: e.T17177A6801911. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2006.RLTS.T17177A6801911.en.

  2. Bray, D.J. 2011, Common Seadragon, Phyllopteryx taeniolatus, in Fishes of Australia, accessed 26 Aug 2014, http://www.fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/3127

    1. "Rare Ruby Seadragon uncovered in Western Australia". Western Australian Museum. Retrieved 19 February 2015.

    External links

    Navigation menu

  • "Dragon Search". Dragon Search. Retrieved 15 September 2017.

  • "Melbourne Aquarium". Melbourne Aquarium. Archived from the original on 5 January 2006. Retrieved 18 February 2005.

  • Dept of Sustainability and Environment Victoria > The marine faunal emblem for the State of Victoria Archived 20 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 8 August 2011

  • Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2014). "Phyllopteryx taeniolatus" in FishBase. November 2014 version.

  • "Western Australia Department of Fisheries". Western Australia Department of Fisheries. Archived from the original on 2 April 2003. Retrieved 18 February 2005.

  • Morrison, S. & Storrie, A. (1999). Wonders of Western Waters: The Marine Life of South-Western Australia. CALM. p. 68. ISBN 0-7309-6894-4.

  • "Life History of the Weedy Sea Dragon". Research. Sydney Institute of Marine Science. 9 September 2008. Retrieved 30 April 2016.

  • Associated Press (12 June 2008). "Endangered sea dragon at Ga. aquarium pregnant". Newsvine. Retrieved 2 March 2015.

  • Papercut Interactive. "Tennessee Aquarium". tnaqua.org.

  • Melbourne Aquarium > Conservation Archived 19 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 6 April 2012.

  • "Weedy Seadragons spawn for Hong Kong aquarist". AquaDaily. 2008-07-18. Retrieved 2009-02-01.

  • Largest Brood of Weedy Sea Dragons Born at Georgia Aquarium Archived 26 July 2013 at the Wayback Machine. Georgia Aquarium press release, 29 March 2012. Accessed 15 August 2013.

  • Weedy Sea Dragons Born At Monterey Bay Aquarium Retrieved 5 August 2012

  • "IUCN Red List". IUCN Red List. Retrieved 15 September 2017.

  • Martin-Smith, K. & Vincent, A. (2006): Exploitation and trade of Australian seahorses, pipehorses, sea dragons and pipefishes (Family Syngnathidae). Oryx, 40: 141-151.

  • "Weedy Seadragon". Zoo Aquarium Association. Retrieved 6 Sep 2012.

  • Smith, Bridie (3 March 2016). "Record season for captive-bred weedy sea dragons". The Age. Melbourne: Fairfix Media. Retrieved 4 March 2016.

  • Wilson, N.G. & Rouse, G.W. (2010): Convergent camouflage and the non-monophyly of 'seadragons' (Syngnathidae:Teleostei): suggestions for a revised taxonomy of syngnathids. Zoologica Scripta, 39: 551-558.


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