Dusky Spinefoot – Siganus Luridus
Dusky Spinefoot known also as Siganus Luridus aka Rabbitfish, has become quite common in the eastern Mediterranean by Lessepsian migration. Its body is compressed about 2-3cm in depth. Length between 10-20cm usually. Colours are variable but usually olive green to dark brown. Pectoral fins are hyaline-yellow with dark crossbars on caudal fins. Care because the spines are venomous and of course do not eat it. It is venomous!!!
This fish prefers inshore waters living close to the bottom in depth not more than 40m grouping together in small groups of 3-4 or solitary as adults. Juveniles pack together in larger schools. Often seen with other species. They have been known to have migrated from the Red Sea into the Mediterranean.
All members of the genus Siganus are herbivorous and fulfill the roles of grazers while also eating plankton. Feeding comprises mainly of a wide range of algae and it is thought that they prefer red algae. You will find them on the edge of reefs or sea grass areas where they come into the shallows to feed on their favourite food.
Duskies produce small sticky egg sacs which form into larvae which are planktonic. After this stage they develop into acronurus having a transparent body remaining in deeper water before moving into the adult habitat to develop past the juvenile stage to the adult stage. There is considerable variation from larval stage to adulthood and also the claim that males reach sexual maturity before females.