Kwajalein Wrasses (Labridae)

The wrasses, family Labridae, constitute a conspicuous group of colorful and active reef fish at Kwaj and on reefs worldwide. Many species have multiple color forms as they transition from juvenile to female to male. Often males and females look so different they were originally described as completely different species before careful observation by divers revealed the true situation. Like the parrotfish, however, sometimes the color form between juvenile and terminal male may contain both males and females, so the term "initial phase" is sometimes used for species where it would take internal examination of the anatomy to distinguish between male and female. Wrasses are carnivores, different species eating a variety of benthic invertebrates and fish. Other species specialize on plankton, while a few species subsist on the parasites and mucus they pick off the bodies of other fish. More information about the individual species can be found on the pages linked below.


Anampses caeruleopunctatus

male

Anampses caeruleopunctatus
female

Anampses melanurus

Anampses meleagrides

Anampses twistii

Bodianus anthioides

Bodianus axillaris

male

Bodianus axillaris
juvenile

Bodianus dictynna

Bodianus loxozomus

Bodianus mesothorax

Bodianus neopercularis

Cheilinus chlorourus

Cheilinus fasciatus

Cheilinus fasciatus
juvenile

Cheilinus oxycephalus

Cheilinus trilobatus

Cheilinus undulatus

Cheilinus undulatus
juvenile

Cheilio inermis

female

Cirrhilabrus balteatus
male

Cirrhilabrus earlei

Cirrhilabrus exquisitus

Cirrhilabrus johnsoni
male

Cirrhilabrus katherinae

Cirrhilabrus luteovittatus
male

Cirrhilabrus rhomboidalis
male

Coris aygula
male

Coris aygula
female

Coris aygula
female

Coris aygula

juvenile

Coris batuensis

Coris gaimard
male

Coris gaimard
female

Coris gaimard
juvenile

Cymolutes praetextatus

Cymolutes torquatus

Epibulus insidiator

male

Epibulus insidiator
female

Epibulus insidiator

female


Gomphosus varius

male

Gomphosus varius
initial phase

Gomphosus varius
juvenile


Halichoeres biocellatus

Halichoeres chrysus
female

Halichoeres claudia

Halichoeres hartzfeldii

male

Halichoeres hartzfeldii

female

Halichoeres hortulanus
male

Halichoeres hortulanus
juvenile

Halichoeres margaritaceus
male

Halichoeres margaritaceus
female

Halichoeres marginatus

Halichoeres melanurus
male

Halichoeres melanurus
female

Halichoeres melasmapomus
female

Halichoeres richmondi
male

Halichoeres trimaculatus
male

Halichoeres trimaculatus
female

Hemigymnus fasciatus

Hemigymnus fasciatus
juvenile

Hemigymnus melapterus

Hemigymnus melapterus
juvenile

Hologymnosus annulatus
juvenile

Hologymnosus doliatus
juvenile

Iniistius aneitensis

Iniistius aneitensis
juvenile

Iniistius celebicus

Iniistius pavo

Labrichthys unilineatus
male

Labrichthys unilineatus
female

Labroides bicolor
male

Labroides bicolor
female

Labroides dimidiatus

Labroides pectoralis

Labropsis alleni

Labropsis micronesica
male

Labropsis micronesica
female

Labropsis xanthonota
male

Labropsis xanthonota
female

Macropharyngodon meleagris
male

Macropharyngodon meleagris
female

Macropharyngodon negrosensis

Novaculichthys taeniourus

Novaculichthys taeniourus
juvenile

Novaculops halsteadi

Oxycheilinus arenatus

Oxycheilinus bimaculatus
male

Oxycheilinus bimaculatus
female

Oxycheilinus celebicus

Oxycheilinus digrammus
male(?)

Oxycheilinus digrammus
female

Oxycheilinus digrammus
juvenile

Oxycheilinus cf orientalis

Oxycheilinus
sp. 1

Oxycheilinus
sp. 2

Oxycheilinus unifasciatus
juvenile

Oxycheilinus unifasciatus
female(?)

Oxycheilinus unifasciatus
male

Paracheilinus bellae
male

Pseudocheilinus evanidus

Pseudocheilinus hexataenia

Pseudocheilinus ocellatus

Pseudocheilinus octotaenia

Pseudocheilinus tetrataenia

Pseudocoris yamashiroi
male

Pseudodax moluccanus

Pseudodax moluccanus
juvenile

Pseudojuloides cerasinus
male

Pteragogus cryptus

Stethojulis bandanensis
terminal male

Stethojulis bandanensis
initial phase

Stethojulis strigiventer

Stethojulis trilineata
terminal male

Stethojulis trilineata
initial phase

Thalassoma amblycephalum
terminal male

Thalassoma amblycephalum
initial phase

Thalassoma amblycephalum
juvenile

Thalassoma hardwicke
terminal male

Thalassoma lunare
terminal male

Thalassoma lunare
initial phase

Thalassoma lutescens
terminal male

Thalassoma purpureum
initial phase

Thalassoma quinquevittatum
terminal male

Thalassoma trilobatum

Wetmorella albofasciata

Wetmorella nigropinnata

Back to Fish page

Kwajalein Underwater home

References used to identify wrasses and to determine what is supposed to be in the Marshalls:

Myers, Robert F. 1999. Micronesian Reef Fishes, third edition. Coral Graphics, Guam. 330pp.

Randall, John E. 2005. Reef and Shore Fishes of the South Pacific. University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu. 707pp.

Randall, John E. & Helen A. Randall. 1987. Annotated Checklist of Fishes of Enewetak Atoll and Other Marshall Islands. In The Natural History of Enewetak Atoll, volume II, Biogeography and Systematics. DOE/EV/00703-T1-Vol.2. 287-384.

Randall, John E., Robert F. Myers, Michael N. Trevor, Scott R. and Jeanette L. Johnson, Satoshi Yoshii and Brian D. Greene. 2005. Ninety-one new records of fishes from the Marshall Islands. Aqua, Journal of Ichthyology and Aquatic Biology 14:38, 115-132.

 

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