Bumphead Parrotfish

Why is it in News?

Andaman & Nicobar has recorded a sharp decline in the number of the species.

About Bumphead Parrotfish:

  • It is the largest species of parrotfish, growing to lengths of 1.3 m and weighing up to 46 kg. It is named as Bumphead as it has a peculiar habit of ramming into the coral reefs and it can nibble up to 5 tonnes of coral reefs every year.
  • It is not legally protected in India but is listed as ‘Vulnerable’ as per the IUCN.

Does its Ramming into the Coral Reef damage the Coral Ecosystem?

  • Prima facie it appears that this peculiar habit of ramming and eating the coral reefs can have detrimental effect on the Coral Ecosystem, but in practice it has been found that this practice promotes coral growth and the overall health of the ecosystem.

Geographical Spread of Bumphead Parrotfish:

  • It is found on the reefs in the Indian and Pacific Oceans, from the Red Sea in the west to Samoa in the east, and from the Yaeyama Islands in the north to the Great Barrier Reef, Australia, in the south.

Threats to Bumphead Parrotfish:

  • Coral bleaching is one of the major causes of the decline in its number.
  • They get caught in the fishing nets which hampers their being.
  • They are considered as prized catch due to its meat delicacies.

Source: TH