Lutjanus kasmira (blueline snapper)
- Summary of Invasiveness
- Taxonomic Tree
- Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature
- Distribution Table
- History of Introduction and Spread
- Risk of Introduction
- Habitat List
- Biology and Ecology
- Water Tolerances
- Natural enemies
- Notes on Natural Enemies
- Means of Movement and Dispersal
- Pathway Causes
- Impact Summary
- Economic Impact
- Environmental Impact
- Social Impact
- Risk and Impact Factors
- Uses List
- Similarities to Other Species/Conditions
- Prevention and Control
- Gaps in Knowledge/Research Needs
- Distribution Maps
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PicturesTop of page
IdentityTop of page
Preferred Scientific Name
- Lutjanus kasmira (Forsskål, 1775)
Preferred Common Name
- blueline snapper
Other Scientific Names
- Diacope octolineata Cuvier, 1828
- Mesoprion etaape Lesson, 1831
- Mesoprion pomacanthus Bleeker, 1855
- Perca lineata Gray, 1854
- Sciaena kasmira Forsskål, 1775
International Common Names
- English: bluestripe snapper; common bluestripe snapper
- Spanish: pargo de rayas azules
- French: vivaneau à raies bleues
Local Common Names
- Christmas Island (Indian Ocean): ikan nonya
- Denmark: blåbåndet snapper
- French Polynesia: blue-lined sea perch; perche à raies bleues; ta'ape; takape
- Guam: bluelined snapper; saas; ta'ape
- India: blue-banded snapper; manhan; reendumas; verikeechan
- Indonesia: bluestriped snapper; gorara tikus
- Japan: yosuji-fuedai
- Kenya: mbawaa
- Kiribati: te baveata; te savane
- Kuwait: naisarah
- Malaysia: kuning-kuning; kunyit; kunyit-kunyit; merah; tanda-tanda
- Marshall Islands: jettar
- Micronesia, Federated states of: bluelined snapper; taat
- Mozambique: pargo de raios azuis
- Myanmar: nga-wet-panni
- Niue: bluelined snapper; foigo
- Northern Mariana Islands: saas; sas
- Oman: hamra; nisar
- Papua New Guinea: blue-striped seaperch; common blue-strips snapper; tatan
- Philippines: adgawon; aluman; dapak; darag-darag; katambak; labongan; maya maya; minanila; miransing; yavay
- Samoa: savane
- Saudi Arabia: hobara; hobara; naisarah
- Seychelles: madras
- Solomon Islands: bluestripe seaperch; bulobulo horara
- Somalia: can-gub
- South Africa: blouband snapper; bluebanded snapper
- Sri Lanka: irri ranna; vali ranna; verikeechan
- Sweden: kasmirasnapper
- Tanzania: janja; kelea; tembo-uzi
- Thailand: pla ka pong daeng thab nam ngern; pla kapong
- USA: bluestriped snapper; yellow and blue seaperch
- USA/Hawaii: ta'ape
Summary of InvasivenessTop of page
L. kasmira is a small snapper (Lutjanidae) with a maximum size of 40 cm (Torres, 1991). It is a brightly colored fish with four horizontal blue stripes on a yellow body. L. kasmira has a broad native geographic range, and is found in near-shore marine waters and coral reef habitats from eastern Africa through Polynesia. It is found outside its native range only in the Hawaiian archipelago, where it was deliberately introduced in the mid-twentieth century as part of an attempt to enhance local fisheries. Like many invasive species, L. kasmira quickly became naturalized to its new environment. It became established and began to reproduce successfully within a few years of being introduced. Once this species became naturalized, it advanced rapidly through the Hawaiian archipelago, with populations spreading from island to island at an average rate of 60 km per year (see History of Introduction/Spread).
Taxonomic TreeTop of page
- Domain: Eukaryota
- Kingdom: Metazoa
- Phylum: Chordata
- Subphylum: Vertebrata
- Class: Actinopterygii
- Order: Perciformes
- Suborder: Percoidei
- Family: Lutjanidae
- Genus: Lutjanus
- Species: Lutjanus kasmira
Notes on Taxonomy and NomenclatureTop of page
Taxonomy and scientific nomenclature of Lutjanus kasmira have been well established for some time. Forsskål (1775) originally named this fish Sciaena kasmira, but later re-classified it as L. kasmira. Contemporary literature should refer to this species as L.kasmira.
There are a multitude of common names in a variety of languages for L. kasmira, owing to the many nations, islands, and associated dialects encompassed by its native range. In Hawaii, where it was introduced, it is called by its Tahitian name, ta`ape. Several species of snapper have similar coloration to L. kasmira (see Similarities to Other Species/Conditions), and share descriptive English names such as bluestripe snapper or blueline snapper. To avoid confusion that might arise from these common names, L. kasmira will used throughout this datasheet.
DescriptionTop of page
L. kasmira is a bright yellow snapper with four horizontal blue stripes on each side. The yellow colour grades to white in the lower third of the body. All the fins are yellow, which distinguishes it from other similar species (see Similarities to Other Species/Conditions). L. kasmira generally grows to about 35 cm total length, though specimens up to 40 cm have been reported (Torres, 1991). The body is moderately compressed laterally, with a length equal to 2.4-2.8 times the height (Allen, 1985). A detailed diagnostic description of L. kasmira, including information on meristic characters and keys to snapper species, can be found in Allen (1985).
DistributionTop of page
L. kasmira has a wide geographic range, spanning over half the circumference of the globe from eastern Africa through Polynesia (Allen, 1985; Anderson, 1986). It is, however, restricted to tropical or subtropical marine environments. It is found in only one location outside of its native range, having been introduced to the Hawaiian archipelago, in the central Pacific Ocean.
Distribution TableTop of page
The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.Last updated: 14 Dec 2020
|Continent/Country/Region||Distribution||Last Reported||Origin||First Reported||Invasive||Reference||Notes|
|South Africa||Present, Widespread||Native|
|British Indian Ocean Territory|
|-Chagos Archipelago||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Cocos Islands||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Hong Kong||Present, Widespread||Native|
|-Andaman and Nicobar Islands||Present, Widespread||Native|
|-Honshu||Present, Widespread||Native||Ogasawara Islands|
|-Ryukyu Islands||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Oman||Present, Localized||Native||Known only from southern Oman|
|Saudi Arabia||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Sri Lanka||Present, Widespread||Native|
|United States||Present||Present based on regional distribution.|
|American Samoa||Present, Widespread||Native|
|-New South Wales||Present, Widespread||Native|
|-Northern Territory||Present, Widespread||Native|
|-Western Australia||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Christmas Island||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Cook Islands||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Federated States of Micronesia||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Marshall Islands||Present, Widespread||Native|
|New Caledonia||Present, Widespread||Native|
|New Zealand||Present, Localized||Native||Kermadec Islands|
|Norfolk Island||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Northern Mariana Islands||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Papua New Guinea||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Solomon Islands||Present, Widespread||Native|
|U.S. Minor Outlying Islands||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Wallis and Futuna||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Atlantic - Southeast||Present, Localized||Native||Reported from East London, South Africa|
|Indian Ocean - Eastern||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Indian Ocean - Western||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Pacific - Eastern Central||Present, Widespread||Native||1955||Introduced to Hawaii, native elsewhere|
|Pacific - Northwest||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Pacific - Southwest||Present, Widespread||Native|
|Pacific - Western Central||Present, Widespread||Native|
History of Introduction and SpreadTop of page
Details of the introduction of L. kasmira are reported in Schumacher and Parrish (2005). L. kasmira were deliberately released at three locations around the island of Oahu. The initial release site was off Barber’s Point, which is the point at the west end of Oahu’s south shore. The second site was in Maunalua Bay, which is a broad, open bay toward the east end of the south shore. This bay is approximately 40 km east of Barber’s Point. The third release point was near Coconut Island (Moku`o Loe). Coconut Island is a small islet located on a patch reef in Kane`ohe Bay, which is a large bay (13 by 4 km) on Oahu’s northeast-facing coast. Coconut Island is nearly 80 km from Maunalua Bay by sea.
IntroductionsTop of page
Risk of IntroductionTop of page
Risk of introduction to new locations is probably low to moderate. The introduction to Hawaii occurred as a result of a deliberate effort to establish a new population of L. kasmira, and such a venture is not likely to be repeated given contemporary views on species introductions. L. kasmira is restricted to tropical or subtropical habitats, and is already found throughout these habitats in the Indian and western and central Pacific Oceans. As such, potential introduction sites would be limited to the tropical eastern Pacific or Atlantic Oceans. L. kasmira is also found in the Red Sea, and could potentially enter the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal, as other species have done (Golani, 1994).
HabitatTop of page
L. kasmira is a species most closely identified with shallow-water reef habitats. It is common on coral reefs and artificial structures in shallow bays (see also discussion in Environmental Requirements) and nearshore reef habitats throughout its range. It generally schools over hard-bottom areas during the day (Friedlander et al., 2002; Schumacher and Parrish, 2005), and is likely familiar to many divers who have spent time in the water in the Indo-Pacific. In addition to the well-known shallow water schools, the fish is also found in deeper waters, at least in a handful of locations. Allen (1985) reports that L. kasmira has been reported to depths of 180 m in the Marquesas and 265 m in the Red Sea. A study of the habitat use of L. kasmira in Hawaii (Parrish et al., 2000) reported that the fish were found as deep as 150 m. It is possible that L. kasmira occurs in similar depths in other locations, but has not yet been reported. The majority of scientific investigations and recreational diving occur shallower than 60 m, and most deep water investigations involve submersibles or remote operated vehicles. These investigations generally focus on deeper habitats or more valuable species than L. kasmira. As such, habitats in middle depths are relatively unstudied. The increasing use of closed-circuit SCUBA (a.k.a. rebreathers) will undoubtedly increase our understanding of the depth range of these and other species across their geographic range.
Habitat ListTop of page
|Marine||Sea caves||Principal habitat||Natural|
|Marine||Inshore marine||Principal habitat||Natural|
|Marine||Coral reefs||Principal habitat||Natural|
|Marine||Benthic zone||Principal habitat||Natural|
Biology and EcologyTop of page
Physiology and Phenology
Water TolerancesTop of page
|Parameter||Minimum Value||Maximum Value||Typical Value||Status||Life Stage||Notes|
|Water temperature (ºC temperature)||Optimum||20-28 tolerated|
Natural enemiesTop of page
|Natural enemy||Type||Life stages||Specificity||References||Biological control in||Biological control on|
|Spirocamallanus istiblenni||Parasite||Aquatic|Adult; Aquatic|Fry||not specific|
Notes on Natural EnemiesTop of page
L. kasmira is a relatively small snapper species and is potentially subject to predation by a variety of larger, piscivorous predators such as jacks and sharks. However, L. kasmira, like other snappers, has numerous spines in its fins that serve to make it less palatable than other reef species such as goatfish (Mullidae), wrass (Labridae) or parrotfish (Scaridae). Predators that prey preferentially on L. kasmira have not been reported, and it is likely that any biocontrol effort based on predation would be unsuccessful. This is evidenced by the rapid expansion of L. kasmira throughout the northwestern Hawaiian Islands. These remote islands and atolls are generally uninhabited and have very little fishing pressure. Thus they have robust populations of apex predators, including jacks (Carangidae) and sharks (Friedlander and DeMartini, 2002). In spite of the presence of healthy populations of these predators, predation pressure was unable to prevent the expansion of the range of L. kasmira.
Means of Movement and DispersalTop of page
Pathway CausesTop of page
Impact SummaryTop of page
|Economic/livelihood||Positive and negative|
Economic ImpactTop of page
Studies thus far do not indicate that L. kasmira has had a measurable biological impact on populations of native resource species. L. kasmira does attack baited fishhooks readily and could the decrease efficiency of commercial fishing operations intending to target more valuable species (Parrish et al., 2000). To date, however, the value of any economic hardship arising from this phenomenon has not been calculated.
In addition to these multi-species fish viewing activities, there are also charter-fishing boats that offer “fun fishing” trips for a variety of species. These trips are marketed as a family-friendly alternative to more expensive offshore fishing trips for marlin, mahi-mahi (dorado, dolphin-fish) or other pelagic fishes. As with fish-viewing activities, the value of such trips cannot be ascribed to one species in particular, though L. kasmira is one of the more commonly-caught species. According to advertisements the cost of a fishing trip ranges from US $70-$130 per person.
Environmental ImpactTop of page
Impact on Biodiversity
Social ImpactTop of page
The introduction of L. kasmira has had a largely negative impact from a socio-cultural standpoint. Although scientific research has not found evidence of impacts to other native fishery species, the public perception that L. kasmira has caused major declines in a variety of more desirable species remains. Efforts to initiate new fisheries management strategies are often met with the argument that L. kasmira is the problem, not fishing pressure. Because the territorial government released this fish in Hawaii, the issue is a frequent source of contention at public meetings. Such discussions often impede dialogue on other salient issues.
Risk and Impact FactorsTop of page
- Has a broad native range
- Abundant in its native range
- Is a habitat generalist
- Capable of securing and ingesting a wide range of food
- Competition (unspecified)
- Difficult to identify/detect in the field
- Difficult/costly to control
UsesTop of page
As discussed in the Impacts section, a limited amount of businesseshave tourist activities that incorporate L. kasmira into wildlife viewing and fishing opportunities. L. kasmira does not comprise the entire focus of these activities, however. This fish is also sold as a food item in fish markets, and consumed by recreational and subsistence fishers.
Uses ListTop of page
- Sport (hunting, shooting, fishing, racing)
Human food and beverage
- Meat/fat/offal/blood/bone (whole, cut, fresh, frozen, canned, cured, processed or smoked)
Similarities to Other Species/ConditionsTop of page
There are several fish species with which L. kasmira might be confused in the field. Most, not surprisingly, are closely related Lutjanid snappers (Lutjanus bengalensis, Lutjanus coeruleolineatus, Lutjanus notatus, Lutjanus quinquelineatus and Lutjanus viridis). The other species that could be confused with L. kasmira is a goatfish (Mullidae), Mulloidichthys mimicus. All these species share the bright yellow colouration and blue stripes of L. kasmira. However, they differ somewhat from the specifics of the colour pattern of L. kasmira, which is yellow on about the upper two-thirds of its body, while the ventral area is white. L. kasmira also has yellow fins and four blue stripes on each side.
L. bengalensis is quite similar in appearance to L. kasmira, with four blue stripes. However, the yellow colouration on L. bengalensis only extends about halfway down its body. Also, only the dorsal and anal fins are yellow; the paired fins (pelvic and pectoral) are white. These two species overlap in a substantial portion of their native ranges. Both are found from East Africa to Indonesia and Papua New Guinea (Allen, 1985; Kailola, 1987). However, only L. kasmira is also native to the Pacific Ocean as far as east as French Polynesia, and has been introduced to Hawaii (Allen, 1985).
Prevention and ControlTop of page
Due to the variable regulations around (de)registration of pesticides, your national list of registered pesticides or relevant authority should be consulted to determine which products are legally allowed for use in your country when considering chemical control. Pesticides should always be used in a lawful manner, consistent with the product's label.Prevention
Gaps in Knowledge/Research NeedsTop of page
As with many tropical reef fish, additional work should be done on the growth, reproductive capacity, and larval dynamics of L. kasmira. Without a thorough understanding of the life history characteristics of this species, it is not possible to understand its spread through the Hawaiian archipelago, or predict its spread should it be introduced elsewhere. Along with studies of life history characteristics, studies of physiological tolerances of this species could help identify habitats that are vulnerable to invasion by L. kasmira. For example, identifying areas where water temperatures are suitable for survival and reproduction of L. kasmira would help to predict where it could become established. Such analyses should be interpreted in the context of how oceanic water temperatures are predicted to change in response to global warming, since areas that are not now suitable habitat for L. kasmira might become suitable in coming years.
ReferencesTop of page
Aeby G; Work T, 2007. Investigation of diseases of corals and fish within the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands and Johnston Atoll. Hawai'i Institute of Marine Biology Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Research Partnership Quarterly Progress Reports, V-VI, 11-13.
Bleeker P, 1855. [English title not available]. (Negende bijdrage tot de kennis der ichthyologische fauna van Borneo. Zoetwatervisschen van Pontianak en Bandjermasin) Natuurkundig Tijdschrift van Nederlandsch Indié, No. 8:391-434.
Division of Aquatic Resources, 2006. Commercial marine landings summary trend report, Calendar Year, 2005. State of Hawai`i, USA: Division of Aquatic Resources, Department of Land and Natural Resources.
Eldredge LG; DeFelice RC, 2000. Checklist of the Marine Invertebrates of the Hawaiian Islands. Honolulu, Hawaii., USA: Hawaii Biological Survey, Bishop Museum,. http://www2.bishopmuseum.org/HBS/invert/list_home.htm
Everson A; Friedlander A, 2004. Catch, effort, and yields for coral reef fisheries in Kane`ohe Bay, O'ahu and Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i: a large urban and a small rural embayment. In: Status of Hawaii's Coastal Fisheries in the New Millennium, revised 2004 edition [ed. by Friedlander A] Honolulu, Hawaii: Hawai'i Audubon Society, 108-128.
Font WF; Rigby MC, 2000. Implications of a new Hawaiian host record from blue-lined snappers Lutjanus kasmira: Is the nematode Spirocamallanus istiblenni native or introduced? Bishop Museum Occasional Papers, No. 64:53-56.
Forsskal P, 1775. [English title not available]. (Descriptiones Animalium Avium, Amphibiorum, Piscium, Insectorum, Vermium; quae in itinere orientali observavit Petrus Forsskal.) Post mortem auctoris [ed. by Niebuhr C, ]. Havenai, Mölleri.
Friedlander AM; DeMartini EE, 2002. Contrasts in density, size, and biomass of reef fishes between the northwestern and the main Hawaiian islands: the effects of fishing down apex predators. Marine Ecology Progress Series, No. 230:253-264.
Hokama Y; Shirai LK; Iwamoto M; Kobayashi N; Goto CS; Nakagawa LK, 1987. Asessment of a rapid enzyme immunoassay stick test for the detection of ciguatoxin and related polyether toxins in fish tissues. Biological Bulletin, No. 172:144-153.
Kailola PJ, 1987. The fishes of Papua New Guinea: a revised and annotated checklist, Vol. II Scorpaenidae to Callionymidae. Research Section, Dept. of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Papua New Guinea. Research Bulletin, No. 41.
Kobayashi DR, 2006. Colonization of the Hawaiian Archipelago via Johnston Atoll: a characterization of oceanographic transport corridors for pelagic larvae using computer simulation. Coral Reefs, 25(3):407-417.
Lesson RP, 1830. Fishes. (Poissons) In: Voyage autour du monde execute sur la corvette de sa Majesté La Coquille pendant les années 1822, 1823, 1824 et 1825 Paris, Bertrand, France: L.I. Duperrey, 66-238.
Miller TL; Cribb TH, 2007. Phylogenetic relationships of some common Indo-Pacific snappers (Perciformes: Lutjanidae) based on mitochondrial DNA sequences, with comments on the taxonomic position of the Caesioninae. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 44(1):450-460.
Parrish JD; Aeby GS; Conklin EJ; Ivey GL, 2000. Interactions of non-indigenous blueline snapper (taape) with native fishery species. Final Report submitted to State of Hawaii, Department of Land and Natural Resources. Honolulu, Hawaii, USA: Division of Aquatic Resources.
Parrish JD; Schumacher BD, 2005. Feeding interactions of the introduced blue-line snapper with important native fishery species in Hawaiian benthic habitats. Final Project Report to Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council under Contract 03-WPC-044.
Randall JE; Guézé P, 1980. The goatfish Mulloidichthys mimicus n. sp. (Pisces, Mullidae) from Oceania, a mimic of the snapper Lutjanus kasmira (Pisces, Lutjanidae). Bulletin of the Museum of Natural History:603-609.
Schumacher BD; Parrish JD, 2005. Spatial relationships between an introduced snapper and native goatfishes on Hawaiian reefs. Biological Invasions, 7(6):925-933. http://www.springerlink.com/content/l2103x8230774612/fulltext.pdf
Winterbottom R; Anderson RC, 1997. A revised checklist of the epipelagic and shore fishes of the Chagos Archipelago, central Indian Ocean. Ichthyological Bulletin of the JLB Smith Institute of Ichthyology, No. 66:1-28.
Work TM; Rameyer RA; Takata G; Kent ML, 2004. Protozoal and epitheliocystis-like infections in the introduced bluestripe snapper Lutjanus kasmira in Hawaii. Diseases of Aquatic Organisms, No. 57:59-66.
WPRFMC, 1986. Combined Fishery Management Plan, Environmental Assessment, and Regulatory Impact Review for the Bottomfish and Seamount Groundfish Fisheries of the Western Pacific Region. 1164 Bishop Street, Suite 1405, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA: Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council.
CABI Data Mining, 2001. CAB Abstracts Data Mining.,
CABI, Undated. CABI Compendium: Status inferred from regional distribution. Wallingford, UK: CABI
ContributorsTop of page
20/12/07 Original text by:
Brett Schumacher, Hawaii Cooperative Fishery, Research Unit Dept. of Zoology, University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2538 McCarthy Mall, Edmondson 152, Honolulu,, HI 96822, USA
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