General Description

Body slender, compressed with long based, low dorsal and anal fins, large scales, a small mouth with fleshy lips and a pair large canine teeth at the front of each jaw. Colour variable, males greenish to yellowish with maroon or purplish stripes along the sides; females and juveniles reddish to greenish-brown with a row of black spots on upper sides, 4-5 dusky bars on lower sides and a black spot on the dorsal fin. Usually 15 cm long head to tail tip (up to 25 cm).


A common wrasse in weedy areas on coastal reefs and in rocky estuaries along the south coast. Like many other wrasses, this species is capable of changing sex from female to male. The green and red to violet colour patterns of males makes them easy to distinguish from the more numerous juveniles and females.


Southern Australia.


Rocky reefs and algal regions in coastal waters and bays.

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