Galeocerdo cuvier (Péron and Lesueur, 1822)

Edwards, A. J., Gill, A. C. & Abohweyere, P. O., 2003, A revision of F. R. Irvine’s Ghanaian marine fishes in the collections of The Natural History Museum, London, Journal of Natural History 37 (18), pp. 2213-2267 : 2216-2225

publication ID 10.1080/00222930210138359

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scientific name

Galeocerdo cuvier (Péron and Lesueur, 1822)


Galeocerdo cuvier (Péron and Lesueur, 1822) View in CoL

Irvine name. Galeocerdo arcticus (Faber) . A junior synonym.

Reference material. Accra (Irvine 155)— BMNH 1934.10.10.1 (one: 680 mm TL, 444 mm precaudal length).

Distribution. All tropical seas (Compagno, 1984).

FAMILY/Species Reference material

CARCHARHINIDAE Sphyrna zygaena August 1938 (Irvine No specimens were found which (Linnaeus, 1758). 295). Irvine also noted known from Morocco to Senegal

that a 210 cm male (Compagno, 1984) and Ghana,

specimen was seen at S. mokarran , both of which are

Accra in May 1938. 120 tonnes of hammerheads are

2000). The main fishery species is Sphyrna tudes Tema , December 1935 Doubtful record. S. tudes is a (Valenciennes, 1822). (Irvine 298, p.p. M. J. although there is a doubtful record Probably a Field). Compagno, 1984). No specimens misidentification of suggest that he may have collected Sphyrna couardi Senegal to Congo (Compagno, Cadenat, 1950. SQUATINIDAE Squatina oculata Skin at Achimota (from No specimen available to examine Bonaparte, 1840. Christiansborg), August Morocco to Angola (Krefft, 1968

1938 (Irvine). PRISTIDAE Pristis microdon No specimens, but The ‘saws’ should have allowed Latham, 1794. Listed as ‘saws’ at Achimota. to Angola: sometimes enters rivers Pristis perotteti Müller Latham and P. pristis (Linnaeus) and Henle. A junior West Africa (see also Poll, 1951) synonym. ELOPIDAE Elops senegalensis Sekumu Lagoon , near No specimens found. Distribution Regan, 1909. Accra, November 1938 rivers (Quéro et al., 1990).

(Irvine 383 pt).

FAMILY/Species Reference material

SYNGNATHIDAE ? Hippocampus Labadi , January 1936 Specimens not found. We tentatively punctulatus Guichenot, (A. P. Brown 2); Accra, that H. deanei of Duméril is a junior 1853. Listed as September 1938 (Irvine deanei was a synonym of H. Hippocampus deani 345). The Labadi Distribution: in the eastern Atlantic Duméril. A junior specimen was caught in Verde Islands and islands of the synonym. a local bottom-net, and (Dawson in Quéro et al., 1990: 658

the one from Accra was

taken over a mile from

the shore in floating

brown seaweeds. POMATOMIDAE Pomatomus saltatrix Prampram , September No specimen found. Distribution: (Linnaeus, 1766). 1938 (Irvine 326). Islands and Morocco southwards

warm seas of the western Atlantic

721–722). On average about 2400

region each year ( FAO, 2000). LUTJANIDAE Lutjanus dentatus Ningo Lagoon , May No specimens found. Distribution (Duméril, 1858). Listed 1930 (Irvine 91). (Allen, 1985). as Lutjanus eutactus Bleeker. A junior synonym (type locality: Ashantee).

FAMILY/Species Reference material

LABRIDAE Coris atlantica Prampram , June 1930 No specimens found. Distribution (Günther, 1862). Listed (Irvine 88); Prampram, the Cape Verde Islands to Congo as Coris julis July 1938 (Irvine 279). West African populations of Coris (Linnaeus) . Probably a Mediterranean, Azores and European misidentification. PERCOPHIDAE Bembrops sp. Irvine reported a The specimen could not be located

specimen 22 cm long Nelson (1996) reported four species

(landed at Prampram caudimacula Steindachner, 1876,

by fishermen who had cadenati Das and Nelson, 1996 .

taken their canoes out indicates that the West African

of sight of land), which describing. The reported occurrence

was sent to the caudimacula is surprising and needs

BM(NH) by Miss V. J.

Foote. TRICHIURIDAE Trichiurus lepturus Accra , January 1930 Specimen not found. Distribution Linnaeus, 1758. (Irvine 25). Elsewhere found in tropical and

1993). About 30 000 tonnes of this

making it an important fishery GOBIIDAE Bathygobius soporator Ada , estuary of River No specimens found. Distribution (Valenciennes, 1837). Volta, November 1938 brackish water. In the eastern

(Irvine 365); mouth of islands (Quéro et al., 1990).

River Ancobra, January the region (Brito and Miller, 2001

1939 (Akpabla A 21).

FAMILY/Species Comments


Ginglymostoma cirratum Irvine noted: ‘This species has been recorded from

(Bonnaterre, 1788). various parts of the West African coast, and almost certainly occurs off the coast of the Gold Coast [ Ghana]’ and so did not himself see this species. Distribution: in the tropical eastern Atlantic recorded from the Cape Verde Islands to Gabon. Also occurs in the western Atlantic and eastern Pacific (Compagno, 1984).


Chaetodon striatus Linnaeus, Doubtful record. C. striatus is a western Atlantic species

1758. which does not occur off West Africa (Allen, 1981).

Irvine most likely was referring to Chaetodon robustus Günther, 1860 as it is the most common butterflyfish in Ghana. Irvine noted that he did not collect C. striatus and his colour description (which is correct for C.

striatus, but does not fit any of the three tropical West African butterflyfish) must have been taken from a book.

The two other butterflyfishes which occur off Ghana are C. marcellae Poll, 1950 and C. hoefleri Steindachner, 1883 .


Thalassoma pavo (Linnaeus, Irvine noted that this species had been recorded from the

1758). ‘ Guinea coast’ by Bleeker and from various parts of the coast of tropical West Africa and suggested that it would almost certainly be found eventually on the coast of Ghana. Distribution: Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic from Portugal southwards to Gabon (Quéro et al., 1990).


Xiphias gladius Linnaeus, Irvine had no doubt that this species was to be found off

1758. Ghana. He reported specimens up to 1.5 m in length having been caught at Prampram, and noted it was sometimes taken in seines near Kpone. He also noted that to the east of Accra, between the years 1934 and 1937, a swordfish was reported in the local papers to have transfixed a man through the head and killed him. On average about 4300 tonnes of this species are caught in the region each year ( FAO, 2000). Distribution: cosmopolitan in warm seas (Nakamura, 1985).

Istiophorus albicans (Latreille, Specimens were seen by Irvine in 1936 (January), and at

1804). Listed as Istiophorus the same time three lorry loads, each fish estimated to be

americanus Cuvier and about 1.5 m in length, were seen by Mr A. P. Brown at

Valenciennes. A junior Labadi. Distribution: tropical and subtropical Atlantic

synonym. (Nakamura, 1985). On average about 1100 tonnes of this species are caught in the region each year ( FAO, 2000).


Porogobius schlegelii No specimens deposited by Irvine although he described

(Günther, 1861). Listed as its coloration in some detail. He noted that the type of

Acentrogobius schlegelii the species in the Leiden Museum [Nationaal

(Günther). Natuurhistorisch Museum], Holland, came from Boutry, Ghana. Distribution: coast of tropical West Africa from Cape Verde Islands and Guinea-Bissau to Congo: entering rivers (Quéro et al., 1990).

FAMILY/Species Comments

Chonophorus lateristriga Irvine reported it as being seen in the River Tano and (Duméril, 1858).Listed as River Volta. Distribution: brackish and freshwaters; Awaous guineensis (Peters) . A lagoons, estuaries from Senegal to Angola (Quéro et al., junior synonym. 1990). MUGILIDAE Liza ramada (Risso, 1826) . Doubtful record. Irvine noted: ‘This species has not been Listed as Mugil capito Cuvier. collected, and may not actually occur in Ghana, but A junior synonym. young specimens recorded by Fowler [Fowler, 1919: 251]

from Ashanti as Liza ramada (Risso) may belong here’.

Distribution: Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic from

Scandinavia to Cape Verde: entering freshwater (Quéro

et al., 1990). Unlikely to occur in Ghana. Liza grandisquamis Irvine noted that ‘This species was not collected, but (Valenciennes, 1836). Listed Bleeker [Bleeker, 1863: 92, as Mugil schlegeli ] and Fowler as Mugil grandisquamis Cuvier [Fowler, 1919: 253] have both recorded specimens from and Valenciennes. ‘‘Ashanti’’.’ Distribution: coast of tropical West Africa

from Senegal to Cameroon: entering rivers (Quéro et al.,


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