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Poisonous animals
 
Cnidarians (Jellyfish, Corals and Anemones)
 
Venomous fish
 
Scorpions
 
Spiders
 
Hymenopterans (Bees, Wasps and Ants)
 
Sea snakes
 
Terrestrial snakes
 
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Genus/Species

 

Rabbitfishes

Clinical entries

For clinical data see section “Risk” below

Taxonomy

Osteichthyes; Perciformes; Siganidae (= Teuthidae)

Common names

Rabbitfishes, Kaninchenfische

Distribution

Indo-Pacific, Mediterranean, Red Sea. Some species also found in brackish water or freshwater.

 

  Fig. 4.26 Siganus sp.

Biology

Smaller fishes, up to 30 cm in length. Live in pairs or in smaller schools, in rocky coastal areas or coral reefs. Body shape oval and greatly compressed laterally.

The name "Rabbitfish" comes from the rabbit-like form of the mouth. They are excellent at camouflaging themselves by changing colour to blend in with their surroundings.

Remarkably pointed fin rays, and in the studied species of the genus Siganus (= Teuthis), some of the fin rays were found to have lateral grooves and venom glands (13 in the dorsal fin, 7 in the anal fin, as well as the first and last ray in the pelvic fins).

Risk

There is little information on envenoming. Stings cause strong radiating pain and in some cases swelling.

Treatment

Symptomatic.

Literature (biological)

De Couet et al. 1981, Halstead 1988, Halstead et al. 1971