Teleostei (teleosts) > Eupercaria/misc
(Various families in series Eupercaria) > Scaridae
(Parrotfishes) > Sparisomatinae
Etymology: Sparisoma: Latin, sparus = a fish with a golden head + Greek, soma = body (Ref. 45335).
More on author: Valenciennes.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 1 - 15 m (Ref. 9710). Tropical; 42°N - 7°N, 88°W - 59°W (Ref. 88982)
Western Atlantic and the Caribbean. Confused with Southwest Atlantic specimens referring to Sparisoma axillare and Eastern Atlantic species referring to S. chaoti (Ref. 88982).
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?, range 16 - ? cm
Max length : 47.8 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 13628)
soft rays: 9. Juveniles and adults in drab phase (which are either mature males or females) are light grayish brown, nearly white ventrally; alternate dark and pale bars cross the chin; caudal peduncle and fin yellow; anal and pelvic fins red. Terminal phase males are dull green or blue-green with a large black spot on upper half of pectoral fin base; pectoral fins dark olive, the outer fifth abruptly pale (Ref. 13442).
Inhabits coral reefs and seagrass beds. Juveniles or primary-phase fish can rapidly assume a mottled pattern as it comes to rest on the bottom. Spawning is usually a group activity in similarly colored males and females (Ref. 5521). A protogynous hermaphrodite (Ref. 55367).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Although protogyny was propossed for this species (Ref. 27876), probably because testicular characteristics showed a secondary characteristic of sex-changed males, observations of overlapping size ranges of males and females, and males maturing at the same ages and sizes as did females, strongly suggest gonochorism (Ref. 103751). A monandric species (Ref. 55367). Length at sex change = 25.0 cm TL (Ref. 55367). Forms leks during breeding (Ref. 55367).
Lieske, E. and R. Myers, 1994. Collins Pocket Guide. Coral reef fishes. Indo-Pacific & Caribbean including the Red Sea. Haper Collins Publishers, 400 p. (Ref. 9710)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 126983)
Threat to humans
Reports of ciguatera poisoning (Ref. 30303)
Fisheries: minor commercial; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion