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Species: Halichoeres socialis, Social Wrasse

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IP-snout yellow, rest greenish, body - white & brown stripes, black spot C base
TP - green-blue front, rest yellow + 2 blue stripes, dark brown blotch above pectoral, C blue stripe

Halichoeres socialis Randall & Lobel, 2003

Social Wrasse

Elongate, compressed; mouth protrusible, opens at front, thick lips; rear of top jawbone not visible on cheek; toothed grinding plates in throat; enlarged canine teeth at front of both jaws (1 pair above, 2 pairs below), a canine at rear of top jaws; gill rakers 18 (17-20); gill membranes fused under throat; dorsal fin VIII-IX, 11-12, not obviously notched between spiny and soft parts; anal fin III, 11-12; pectoral 13; lateral line unbroken, but abruptly bent down under rear of dorsal fin, its tubes branched, except those on tail base; lateral line with 26-29 pored scales.

Initial phase: snout yellow; rest of head and back grey-green; a bright white stripe from cheek to lower part of the base of the tail fin, that stripe breaking into spots at the rear; a less distinct whitish stripe from nape along each side of the top of the back; a white stripe along mid-flank bounded above and below by narrow brown stripe, a prominent elongate black spot with white top and bottom edges at the center base of the tail fin. Terminal phase: head and upper front back grey-green; below and rear body yellowish; a large dark brown blotch on mid-flank above the pectoral base; a bright green blue stripe along cheek to base of tail fin, a less distinct green blue stripe from above eye along upper back, this breaking into spots at the rear; dorsal and anal fins translucent orange, with blue spots along the base and a blue outer edge; tail fin translucent orange, with lines of blue spots formed by a continuation of the 2 blue body stripes; sometimes a black spot at the base of the tail fin.

Reaches 5.5 cm.

Lives on lagoonal reefs; sand and rubble areas.

Depth range: 0-10 m.

Belize to Honduras.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom + water column
  • Near Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Water column
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Data
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Zooplankton
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Caribbean endemic
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • GC endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Endangered
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 5.5
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 10