Volume 6 Number 10
Morning Rush: Stoplight Parrotfish
at Andrea Reef near Bonaire
Stoplight Parrotfish are big and colorful. They get their names because they have red, yellow, and green colors, just like a stoplight. Stoplight Parrotfish are fairly common, and I've seen many near Bonaire.
In spite of being common, Stoplight Parrotfish share the fate of the coral reef. Stoplight Parrotfish need corals in their diet, so they need clean shallow water with healthy corals for their survival. As the Caribbean reefs are destroyed by human activities, these fish will become endangered. We must learn not to do things that harm the coral reef.
Like other Parrotfishes, Stoplight Parrotfish get their name because their beaks resemble the beaks of parrots. They use their strong beaks to scrape algae from the corals and will even bite off chunks of coral to eat.
The fish in this picture is an adult male Stoplight Parrotfish. The female Stoplight Parrotfish is very different colors; a pattern of red, white, and black. Both male and female Stoplight Parrotfish are big fish, each over 2 feet long.
Parrotfishes eat algae and corals. Learn more about their diet on the ReefNews Guide to Corals.
ReefNews President Jonathan Dowell took this picture using a Canon 10D digital camera with a Canon 28-105 mm zoom lens in an Ikelite housing with an Ikelite strobe.
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