More
    Categories

    Wrasses

    Related Articles

    Overview

    Wrasses are found worldwide in shallow waters and vary greatly in size. They are invertebrate eaters and forage around coral rubble for food, darting in and out of caves. This is a very interesting fish family because of many things: fish in this family often change sex, there are differences between juveniles and adults and males and females.

    The cleaner wrasse offers a cleaning service to all fish that visit its “service station,” usually a definite area on the coral reef. It picks off parasites from the visiting fish’s skin, even from inside the mouth and gills of larger specimens.

    Symbiotic Relationships

    While very welcoming, this service has important ramifications for members of this genus; Labroides do this in order to get food and are dependent on other fish bringing it to them. Removing cleaner from the reef results in other species of fish ceasing to visit, as they know that its services will no longer be available.

    Tankmate Considerations

    This dependency between species is a vital part of coral reef life and denuding the reef of cleaner fish is to be discouraged. One also has to consider what the cleaner Wrasse might feed on once the parasites have been cleaned from its tankmates.

    Sleeping

    Some Wrasses burrow into the substrate at night. This doesn’t hurt them at all. Similar to some Parrot fishes there are Wrasses that manufacture a mucus cocoon within which they spend the night. To ensure that you provide suitable “sleeping accomodation” for these species, the substrate should be sandy and some inches deep.

    As Pets

    Wrasses are territorial, which means that considerable thought has to be given to their tankmates, but they are quite hardy. Don’t always assume that the sight of a Wrasse “flashing” off the substrate is a sign of skin irritation – they sometimes adopt this tactic to uncover food.

    Look carefully how the Wrasses swim – they hardly use their caudal fins ar all; all of the movement is generated with the pectoral fins, which allows the fish to glide through the water.

    Video Credits: Maidenhead Aquatics
    Image Credits:  Brocken Inaglory, WikiMedia

    Categories

    Other Topics

    Bridal Wreath Spirea

    Overview Bridal Wreath Spirea (Spiraea prunifolia) is a large, arching shrub with long branches covered with white flowers...

    Maine Coon

    History & Overview Many myths surrounding the Maine coon cat, especially regarding its origins. However, there are some...

    Dwarf Larkspur

    Overview The Dwarf Larkspur (Delphinium tricorne) is a tall perennial herb native to moist, wooded slopes, prairies and...

    Humidity Control

    Limited Understanding Our understanding of how reptiles and amphibians react to humidity or barometric changes is very limited. Some species...

    Old English Sheepdog (Bobtail)

    Overview The Old English Sheepdog, also known affectionately as Bobtail, is probably the most huggable breed in the...