Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Xyrichtys martinicensis, Rosy Razorfish, Rosy Razorfish Wrasse, Straight-tail Razorfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

forehead not v steep
IP: tan; head white + grey bar; belly white + red bars
TP blue-green, side head & pelvics yellow, pectoral base black

Xyrichtys martinicensis Valenciennes in Cuvier & Valenciennes, 1840

Rosy Razorfish, Straight-tail Razorfish, Rosy Razorfish Wrasse

Head and body oblong, strongly compressed, moderately slender; head profile not very steep, rounded, not vertical, snout bluntly pointed, with a fleshy longitudinal keel at front; eye on upper ½ of head; mouth protrusible, opens at front, thick lips; rear of top jawbone not visible on cheek; toothed grinding plates in throat; both jaws with a pair of large canines at front, no rear canine tooth; 21-25 gill rakers; gill membranes fused under throat; dorsal fin IX, 12, spines regularly spaced, not obviously notched between spiny and soft parts; anal fin III, 12; (rarely 13); tail fin rounded in female, straight in male; pelvics pointed but without long filaments; lateral line in 2 sections, rear section on tail base, with 5 pored scales; no scales on cheek, opercle or lower jaw or on bases of dorsal and anal fins.

Juvenile: silvery, with a brown stripe from eye to tail. Initial phase: greenish to tan above, pinkish below; face white; a diffuse orange stripe from eye to tail; a dark brown blotch on cheek bordered above and below by white areas; belly with large white blotch and thin red bars; base of tail fin reddish. Terminal phase: greenish blue; cheek & opercle golden with narrow blue bars; eye red; a black bar on pectoral base; body scales with blue vertical lines; pelvics yellow.

Size: 15 cm.

Habitat: benthic sand and seagrass bottoms.

Depth: 5-40 m.

Bermuda to the S Caribbean, also in Brazil.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • 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
  • Demersal
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Zooplankton
  • 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
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends South of GC
  • 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
  • 15
Depth Range Min
  • 5
Depth Range Max
  • 40