Ryan Photographic - Labridae - Wrasses and parrotfishes


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Family Labridae

The family Labridae is enormously successful witth around 600 species distributed in 69 genera. The Wikipedia entry on the Labridae is even more expansive with "over 600 species in 82 genera". Either way it is the second most speciose family on the planet, second only to the gobies (Gobiidae). Recently the parrotfishes, now subfamily Scarinae, were moved from their own family Scaridae into the Labridae. As I have always had toruble telling them apart on occasion this makes firm sense.

When you dive you are always aware of wrasses. They are self-important "busy" fish with apparently insatiable curiosity. They are relatively fearless and most will allow close approach. They typically swim by sculling with their pectoral fins but will use their caudal fin when swift movement is necessary. They are all carnivorous but have very varied feeding mechanisms. These range from "fish cleaning" in the Labroides wrasse to fish eating in others.

They vary in size from a few cms all the way up to the humphead (Napoleon) wrasse which used to grow to 2.5m. Fish of this size have all been fished out. Sadly, humphead wrasse are a "status" fish in parts of South East Asia where the lips may be all that is eaten.

Labrids show considerable color diversity; juveniles are usually a different color from females and adult males (which are different from each other). Juveniles initially mature into females and are able to change their sex to male - these are usually much more brightly colored than females or juveniles.

The subfamily Scaridae contains the well-known parrotfish - so named for their beak-like mouth. At the time I wrote this Fishbase recognized 83 species in 9 genera.

They are important coral reef species feeding on algae, coralline algae and in some species, coral polyps. They eat substantial amounts of coral rock and coralline algae which helps them break down the other algae they eat. Wikipedia states that a parrotfish can produce 90 kgs of coral sand a year - so next time you lounge on that beautiful tropical beach remember where it comes from ...

Like the wrasses, parrotfishes exhibit a wide variety of color patterns both within and between species. Juvenile parrotfish are usually differently colored from adults. Sex change is common. Many start off as females and then change to males as they get bigger. Males and females are usually differently colored.

A few species secrete a mucus cocoon around themselves at night, eating it in the morning, thereby recyclng nutrients. The cocoon is supposed to mask their scent from olfactory predators such as moray eels. In addition, the very act of touching the cocoon gives the parrotfish a warning that something is amiss.

The largest of the parrotfish is the bumphead parrotfish which supposedly reaches 1.3m. Having been lucky enough to see a herd of these magnificent fish in the Raja Ampat Islands I have to question this upper size limit - however, the excitement of seeing 20-30 of these massive fish going about their business feeding is enough to suspend all critical faculties so perhaps they just loomed larger in my memories.

 

Anampses melanurus White-spotted wrasse

Anampses melanurus White-spotted wrasse, Intermediate phase, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 7651 Anampses melanurus White-spotted wrasse, Intermediate phase, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Bodianus anthioides Lyretail hogfish

Bodianus anthioides Lyretail hogfish (Labridae)  Taveuni, Fiji 4486

FISH 4486 Bodianus anthioides Lyretail hogfish Taveuni, Fiji.

Bodianus diplotaenia, Mexican hogfish

Bodianus diplotaenia, Mexican hogfish young terminal phase, Loreto, Sea of Cortez

FISH 5435 Bodianus diplotaenia, Mexican hogfish young terminal phase, Loreto, Sea of Cortez.

Mexican hogfish

FISH 6956 Bodianus diplotaenia, Mexican hogfish, Loreto, Sea of Cortez.

Bodianus diplotaenia, Mexican hogfish, Loreto, Sea of Cortez

FISH 5438 Bodianus diplotaenia, Mexican hogfish, Loreto, Sea of Cortez.

Bodianus loxozonus Blackfin hogfish

Bodianus loxozonus Blackfin hogfish, Kadavu, Fiji

Bodianus mesothorax Blackbelt wrasse

blackbelt wrasse

FISH 1417 Bodianus mesothorax Blackbelt wrasse juvenile Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Bodianus rufus Spanish hogfish

Spanish hogfish, Bodianus rufus, photographed at Glover's Reef, Belize.

Bodianus vulpinus Red pigfish

Red pigfish male

FISH 3729 Bodianus vulpinus, Red pigfish, male, Poor Knights, New Zealand.

Female Bodianus vulpinus, red pigfish. Photographed at Kelly Tarlton's, Auckland, New Zealand

Calatomus spinidens Raggedtoothed parrotfish

Calatomus spinidens Puerto Galera, Philiipines

FISH 7699 Calatomus spinidens Raggedtoothed parrotfish, Puerto Galera, Philiipines.

Cheilinus chlorourus Floral wrasse

Cheilinus chlorourus Floral wrasse, Beqa Lagoon, Fiji

Cheilinus fasciatus Redbreasted wrasse

redbreasted wrasse photo

FISH 0263 Cheilinus fasciatus Redbreasted wrasse, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Cheilinus fasciatus Redbreasted wrasse Raja Ampat

FISH 9919 Cheilinus fasciatus Redbreasted wrasse Raja Ampat.

Cheilinus undulatus Napoleon or Humphead wrasse

Humphead wrasse

FISH 8217 Cheilinus undulatus Humphead or Napoleon wrasse Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Cheilinus undulatus Napoleon wrasse Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 8184 Cheilinus undulatus Napoleon or Humphead wrasse Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Cheilinus undulatus Humphead or Napoleon wrasse Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 8218 Cheilinus undulatus Humphead or Napoleon wrasse Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Cheilio inermis Cigar wrasse

Cheilio inermis Cigar wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines

FISH 4598 Cheilio inermis Cigar wrasse, yellow morph. Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Cheilio inermis Cigar wrasse, yellow morph

FISH 4933 Cheilio inermis Cigar wrasse, yellow morph. Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Choerodon anchorago Anchor tuskfish

Choerodon anchorago Anchor tuskfish, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 7634 Choerodon anchorago Anchor tuskfish, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat. This isn't the typical color.

Choerodon anchorago Anchor tuskfis

FISH 8919 Choerodon anchorago Anchor tuskfish, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

Choerodon anchorago Anchor tuskfish night time tuskfish Raja Ampat

FISH 9842 Choerodon anchorago Anchor tuskfish night time coloration, Raja Ampat.

Choerodon fasciatus Harlequin tuskfish

Harlequin tuskfish, Choerodon fasciatus. Captive specimen, Denver Zoo.

Choerodon zosterophorus Darkstripe tuskfish

Choerodon zosterophorus Darkstripe tuskfish

FISH 7686 Choerodon zosterophorus Darkstripe tuskfish Puerto galera, Philippines.

Cirrhilabrus cyanopleura Bluesided wrasse

Cirrhilabrus cyanopleura Bluesided wrasses Raja Ampat

FISH 9976 Cirrhilabrus cyanopleura Terminal phase Bluesided wrasse Raja Ampat

Cirrhilabrus lubbocki Orangeback wrasse

Cirrhilabrus lubbocki Orangeback wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines

FISH 5791 Cirrhilabrus lubbocki Orangeback wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Cirrhilabrus punctatus Dotted wrasse

Cirrhilabrus punctatus Dotted wrasse transforming from IP to TP (Labridae), Kadavu, Fiji

FISH 5914 Cirrhilabrus punctatus Dotted wrasse transforming from IP to TP (Labridae), Kadavu, Fiji.

Cirrhilabrus temminckii? Peacock wrasse

Cirrhilabrus temminckii Puerto Galera, Philippines

FISH 7109 Cirrhilabrus temminckii? Peacock wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines

Clepticus parrae Creole wrasse

Clepticus parrae, Creole wrasse (Labridae), Glover's Reef, Belize

FISH 3171 Clepticus parrae, Creole wrasse, Glover's Reef, Belize

Clepticus parrae, Creole wrasse

FISH 3255 Clepticus parrae, Creole wrasse, Glover's Reef, Belize

Coris aygula Clown coris

Coris aygula, Clown coris. Captive specimen, Denver Zoo.

Coris batuensis Batu coris

Batu coris

FISH 0070 Coris batuensis Batu coris, Kri, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Coris batuensis, Batu coris, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 6955 Coris batuensis, juvenile Batu coris, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

Coris gaimard Yellowtail coris

yellowtail coris

FISH 3626 Coris gaimard, Yellowtail coris intermediate phase, Kri, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

yellowtail wrasse

FISH 0061 Coris gaimard, Yellowtail coris intermediate phase, Kri, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

yellowtail wrasse

FISH 0065 Coris gaimard, Yellowtail coris intermediate phase, Kri, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Coris gaimard Yewllowtail coris, Kri Eco, Raja Ampa

FISH 7533 Coris gaimard Yellowtail coris, Kri Eco, Raja Ampa

Coris sandageri Sandager's wrasse

Sandager's wrasse

FISH 3723 Coris sandageri, Sandager's wrasse, male, Poor Knights, New Zealand.

Cymolutes torquatus Collared knifefish

Cymolutes torquatus Collared knifefish, Lembeh Straits

FISH 6746 Cymolutes torquatus Collared knifefish, Lembeh Straits.

Cymolutes torquatus Collared knifefish, Lembeh Straits

FISH 6747 Cymolutes torquatus Collared knifefish, Lembeh Straits.

Epibulus insidiator Slingjaw wrasse

Epibulus insidiator juvenile slingjaw wrasse, yellow morph, Kadavu, Fiji
Epibulus insidiator Adult slingjaw wrasse being shadowed by Aulostomus chinensis Trumpetfish, Kadavu, Fiji

Gomphosus varius Bird wrasse

Bird wrasse intermediate phase photo

FISH 6110 Gomphosus varius Bird wrasse, intermediate phase Kona, Hawaii.

bird wrasse terminal phase photo

FISH 6168 Gomphosus varius Bird wrasse, terminal phase, Kona, Hawai'i.

Gomphosus varius, Bird wrasse, terminal phase, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 6957 Gomphosus varius, Bird wrasse, terminal phase, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

Halichoeres biocellatus Twospot wrasse

Halichoeres biocellatus Twospot wrasse terminal phase

FISH 4042 Halichoeres biocellatus Twospot wrasse terminal phase, Taveuni, Fiji

Halichoeres biocellatus Twospot wrasse terminal phase

FISH 3374 Halichoeres biocellatus Twospot wrasse terminal phase, Kadavu, Fiji

Halichoeres chloropterus Pastel-green wrasse

Halichoeres chloropterus Pastel-green wrasse Raja Ampat

FISH 0050 Halichoeres chloropterus Pastel-green wrasse (not sure about this ID) Raja Ampat

Halichoeres chrysus Canary wrasse

canary wrasse

FISH 0036 Halichoeres chrysus, Canary wrasse, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

canary wrasse

FISH 0858 Halichoeres chrysus, Canary wrasse, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Halichoeres garnoti Yellowhead wrasse

Juvenile yellowhead wrasse Halichoeres garnoti, Glover's Reef, Belize.
Halichoeres garnoti Yellowhead wrasse female, Roatan

FISH 0694 Halichoeres garnoti Yellowhead wrasse female, Roatan

Halichoeres hortulanus Checkerboard wrasse

Halichoeres hortulanus Checkerboard wrasse, intermediate phase, Beqa, Fiji

Halichoeres leucurus Chain-lined wrasse

Halichoeres  leucurus Chain-lined wrasse intermediate phase Kri Eco Raja Ampat

FISH 8933 Halichoeres leucurus Chain-lined wrasse intermediate phase Kri Eco Raja Ampat.

Halichoeres nebulosus Nebulous wrasse

Halichoeres nebulosus Nebulous wrasse intiial phase, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 7646 Halichoeres nebulosus Nebulous wrasse initial phase, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Halichoeres prosopeion Twotone wrasse

twotone wrasse terminal phase
FISH 3519 Halichoeres prosopeion Twotone wrasse terminal phase, Raja Ampat, West Papua.
Halichoeres prosopeion Twotone wrasse, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 7521 Halichoeres prosopeion Twotone wrasse, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Halichoeres prosopeion twotone wrasse juvenile

FISH 5796 Halichoeres prosopeion twotone wrasse juvenile, Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Halichoeres scapularis Zigzag wrasse

Halichoeres scapularis Zigzag wrasse, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 8007 Halichoeres scapularis Zigzag wrasse, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Hemigymnus fasciatus Barred thicklip

Hemigymnus fasciatus Barred thicklip, Somosomo Strait, Taveuni

FISH 4573 Hemigymnus fasciatus Barred thicklip, Somosomo Strait, Taveuni.

Hologymnosus annulatus Ring wrasse

ring wrasse juvenile phase

FISH 0976 Hologymnosus annulatus, Ring wrasse juvenile phase, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Hologymnosus doliatus, Pastel ring wrasse

pastel ring wrasse initial phase

FISH 3351 Hologymnosus doliatus, Pastel ring wrasse initial phase Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Iniistius aneitensis Whitepatch razorfish

Iniistius aneitensis Whitepatch razorfish, Puerto Galera, Philippines

Iniistius aneitensis Whitepatch razorfish, Puerto Galera, Philippines

Iniistius pavo Peacock razorfish

Iniistius pavo Peacock razorfish juvenile phase, Puerto Galera, Philippines

FISH 4868 Iniistius pavo Peacock razorfish juvenile phase, Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Lachnolaimus maximus Hogfish

Lacholaimus maximus Hogfish photographed at night, Glover's Reef, Belize.

Labrichthys unilineatus Tubelip wrasse

Labrichthys unilineatus Tubelip wrasse female  (Labridae)  Taveuni, Fiji.

FISH 4438 Labrichthys unilineatus Tubelip wrasse female (Labridae) Taveuni, Fiji.

Labroides bicolor Bicolor cleaner wrasse

bicolor cleaner wrasse

 

FISH 4170 Labroides bicolor Bicolor cleaner wrasse, Taveuni, Fiji.

Labroides dimidiatus Bluestreak cleaner wrasse

bluestreak cleaner wrasse

FISH 3801 Labroides dimidiatus tansforming from intermediate phase to terminal phase, Kadavu, Fiji.

bluestreak cleaner wrasse cleaning sweetlips

FISH 3243 Labroides dimidiatus cleaning Ribbon sweetlips Plectorhinchus polytaenia, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Labroides phthirophagus Hawaiian cleaner wrasse

Hwaiian cleaner wrasse

FISH 6310 Labroides phthirophagus Hawaiian cleaner wrasse, Kona, Hawaii.

Labropsis xanthonota Wedge-tailed wrasse

Labropsis xanthonota Wedge-tailed wrasse juvenile phase (Labridae), Kadavu, Fiji

FISH 3811 Labropsis xanthonota Wedge-tailed wrasse juvenile phase (Labridae), Kadavu, Fiji

Macropharyngodon meleagris Leopard wrasse

Leopard wrasse

FISH 3373 Macropharyngodon meleagris Leopard wrasse Initial phase, Kadavu, Fiji

Leoard wrasse

FISH 3779 Macropharyngodon meleagris Leopard wrasse Initial phase, Kadavu, Fiji

Macropharyngodon meleagris Leopard wrasse Initial phase Raja Ampat

FISH 0776 Macropharyngodon meleagris Leopard wrasse Initial phase Raja Ampat. Not sure about the ID.

Macropharyngodon negroensis Black wrasse

Black wrasse intermediate phase

FISH 4690 Macropharyngodon negroensis Black wrasse Intermediate phase,Taveuni, Fiji

Notolabrus fucicola Banded wrasse

Notolabrus fucicola Banded wrasse, Fiordland, New Zealand

Novaculichthys taeniorus Rockmover wrasse

Novaculichthys taeniorous Rockmover wrasse Terminal phase (Labridae), Taveuni, Fiji

FISH 4305 Novaculichthys taeniorus Rockmover wrasse Terminal phase (Labridae), Taveuni, Fiji

Novaculichthys taeniorous Rockmover wrasse Terminal phase (Labridae), Taveuni, Fiji

FISH 4303 Novaculichthys taeniorus Rockmover wrasse Terminal phase (Labridae), Taveuni, Fiji

Rockmover wrasse and Blackfin hogfish feeding together Taveuni, Fiji

FISH 4322 Rockmover wrasse and Blackfin hogfish feeding together Taveuni, Fiji

Oxycheilinus bimaculatus Twospot wrasse

Oxycheilinus bimaculatus Twospot wrasse, Puerto Galera, Philippines

FISH 4857 Oxycheilinus bimaculatus Twospot wrasse, Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Oxycheilinus bimaculatus Twospot wrasse, Puerto Galera, Philippines

FISH 4859 Oxycheilinus bimaculatus Twospot wrasse, Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Oxycheilinus bimaculatus Twospot wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines

FISH 7927 Oxycheilinus bimaculatus Twospot wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Oxycheilinus digrammus Linecheeked wrasse

Oxycheilinus digrammus linecheeked wrasse. This is the red morph photographed in Kadavu, Fiji
linecheeked wrasse

FISH 9633 Oxycheilinus digrammus Linedcheeked wrasse Raja Ampat.

Oxycheilinus rodochrous Oriental wrasse

Oxycheilinus rodochrous Oriental wrasse Kri Eco Raja Ampat

FISH 9279 Oxycheilinus rodochrous Oriental wrasse Kri Eco Raja Ampat. They often lurk in these soft corals and match the color very closely.

Pseudolabrus miles Scarlet wrasse

Pseudolabrus miles Scarlet wrasse, Fiordland, New Zealand

Pseudolabrus ocellatus Spotty

Pseudolabrus ocellatus, juvenile Spotty in captivity, New Zealand

Pteragogus cryptus Cryptic wrasse

Cryptic wrasse

FISH 7427 Pteragogus cryptus Cryptic wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Pteragogus enneacanthus Cockerel wrasse

Pteragogus enneacanthus Cockerel wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines I

FISH 5580 Pteragogus enneacanthus Cockerel wrasse Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Thalassoma amblycephalum Two-tone wrasse

Thalassoma amblycephalum Two-tone wrasse (Labridae) Taveuni, Fiji

FISH 5061 Thalassoma amblycephalum Two-tone wrasse (Labridae) Taveuni, Fiji

Thalassoma duperrey Saddle wrasse

terminal phase saddle wrasse

FISH 5987 Thalassoma duperrey Saddle wrasse, terminal phase, Kona, Hawaii.

saddle wrasse photo

FISH 5984 Thalassoma duperrey Saddle wrasse, terminal phase, Kona, Hawaii.

saddle wrasse photo

FISH 5887 Thalassoma duperrey Saddle wrasse, terminal phase, Kona, Hawaii.

Thalassoma jansenii Jansen's wrasse

Thalassoma jansenii Jansen's wrasse (Labridae) Kadavu, Fiji

FISH 9759 Thalassoma jansenii Jansen's wrasse (Labridae) Kadavu, Fiji

Thalassoma jansenii Jansen's wrasse, Kri Eco Raja Ampat

FISH 8885 Thalassoma jansenii Jansen's wrasse (Labridae) Raja Ampat

Thalassoma lucasanum Cortez rainbow wrasse

Cortez rainobw wrasse initial phase

FISH 5318 Thalassoma lucasanum, Cortez rainbow wrasse, Initial phase, Sea of Cortez.

Thalassoma lunare Crescent wrasse

Thalassoma lunare, Crescent wrasse, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat ..

FISH 8823 Thalassoma lunare Crescent wrasse intermediate phase, Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Thalassoma lunare Crescent wrasse (Labridae), Taveuni, Fiji

FISH 4158 Thalassoma lunare Crescent wrasse, intermediate phase Taveuni, Fiji.

Thalassoma lutescens Sunset wrasse

Thalassoma lutescens, Sunset wrasse, terminal male, Kadavu, Fiji

 

 

 

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