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Species: Doratonotus megalepis, Dwarf Wrasse

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body oval; head small, pointed
D IX, deep notch after 3rd spine
mottled red & green

Doratonotus megalepis Gunther, 1862

Dwarf Wrasse

Body oval, strongly compressed; head small, upper profile slightly concave; snout pointed, low; mouth highly extendible, opens at front, thick lips; rear of top jawbone not visible on cheek; toothed grinding plates in throat; 1 pair of canines at front of both jaws, 1 pair at rear of top jaws; gill rakers 15-16; gill membranes fused under throat; dorsal fin with IX spines, a deep notch after the 3rd spine, not obviously notched between spiny and soft parts; anal fin III, 9; tail fin rounded; lateral line in two pieces, rear piece on tail base, 17 + 4 pores; side of head below and behind eye covered with scales.

Greenish, mottled with red-brown and translucent orange, and with scattered red spots.

Reaches 9.4 cm.

Lives in shallow seagrass beds, and beds of macroalgae.

Depth range: 0-16 m.

North Carolina to Brazil; the E Atlantic.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Submerged vegetation
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Mobile benthic worms
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • Transatlantic (East+West Atlantic)
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Extends South of GC
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 9.4
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 16