Also known as Maori Wrasses, Thicklip Wrasses, Tripletail Wrasse, Triple-tail Maori and Tri-lobed Maori Wrasse.
Found singly over shallow protected inshore reefs, often in silty conditions.
These are the largest of wrasses with thick lips, hence the name!
They feed on hard shell invertebrates.
Length - 45cm
Depth - 1-30m
Most reef fish seen by divers during the day are grazers, that cruise around just above the surface of the coral or snoop into crevices looking for algae, worms and small crustaceans.
Wrasses have small protruding teeth and graze the bottom taking in a variety of snails, worms, crabs, shrimps and eggs. Any hard coats or thick shells are then ground down by their pharyngeal jaws and the delicacies inside digested.
From juvenile to adult wrasses dramatically alter their colour and body shapes.
Wrasses are always on the go during the day, but are the first to go to bed and the last to rise.
Small wrasses dive below the sand to sleep and larger wrasses wedge themselves in crevasses.