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      Bluehead Wrasse

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      Photo Details

      Reef Keeper

      Registered: July 2003
      Location: Sumner
      Posts: 7,530
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      Thalassoma bifasciatum
      Max. size: 25.0 cm TL (male/unsexed); max. reported age: 3 years
      Environment: reef-associated; marine ; depth range 0 - 40 m
      Gazetteer Western Atlantic: Bermuda, Florida (USA), southeastern Gulf of Mexico and throughout the Caribbean Sea to northern South America.
      Morphology: Dorsal spines (total): 8; Dorsal soft rays (total): 12-13; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 10-11. Body elongate; 3 primary color phases, the smallest with a black mid-lateral stripe which continues as pale red blotches on head; back above stripe yellow on reef fish and whitish on fish from inshore non-reef areas, and body below white. The largest phase, has a bright blue head and a green body with two broad vertical black bars anteriorly which are separated by a light blue interspace; this phase is always male. The small yellow phase with the black stripe may be either male or female .
      Biology: Inhabits reef areas, inshore bays and seagrass beds. Feeds mainly on zooplankton and small benthic animals, but may also feed on ectoparasites of other fishes. Spawn at midday throughout the year. Sex reversal observed. Generally of no interest to fisheries because of its small average size
      Aquarium Care:Has a temperature range of 74 - 79°F (23 - 26°C) and has a natural diet of benthic invertebrate and zooplankton. Requires a meaty diet consisting of finely chopped enriched fish or shrimp flesh, mysis, and enriched brine shrimp with two to three feedings per day. Sometimes bury themselves if frightened. Usually, they sleep under rock shelves, on or under a coral branch, in a crevice, or directly on the sand surface, however, providing a deep sandbed of about 3 inches (7.5 cm) of fine-grained sand would be a good idea. They are highly active swimmers and need plenty of swimming space. They will also eat snails, worms, sea stars, urchins, and clams.
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      Keywords: Bluehead Wrasse

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