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Species: Scarus guacamaia, Rainbow parrotfish

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small - green, scales edged in bronze, head bronze
large - front 1/2 bronze, rear green

Scarus guacamaia Cuvier, 1829

Rainbow parrotfish

Body oval, somewhat compressed; teeth fused into a beak with two broad joined plates on each jaw, outer surface of plates smooth, not covered by lips; top jaw overlaps lower jaw at front; 1-2 canines on rear side of top jaw; large crushing plates of molar teeth form “pharyngeal mill” in throat; gill rakers 51-64; dorsal fin IX, 10, no notch between spines and rays; anal fin III, 9; pectoral II, 14 (1st spine very short); tail fin rounded in juveniles, W-shaped edge in large adults with elongate lobes; scales large, smooth, 3 rows on cheek, lowest row of 1 scale; 6 scales on center of nape before dorsal fin; lateral line in 2 sections.

Small fish: scales with bronze edges, green centers; scaled part of head bronze, short green lines around eye; chest and unscaled part of head dull orange; fins dull orange. Large fish: bicolored, rear (lower belly, top of back, rear of body and tail base) green, front half and head bronze, more green areas in larger fish; dorsal, tail and anal fins with green bases, orange centers and green borders.

Reaches 120 cm.

On reefs.

Depth range: 1-55  m; adults feed in very shallow water.

Bermuda to the S Caribbean; possibly in Brazil.


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Salinity
  • Marine
  • Brackish
Inshore/Offshore
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
Habitat
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Corals
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Mangrove
  • Estuary
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Herbivore
  • Data
Diet
  • Benthic macroalgae/seagrasses
  • Benthic microalgae
Egg Type
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
  • No data
Global Endemism
  • Greater Caribbean endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Island (s)
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • GC endemic
Residency
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
IUCN Red List
  • Near threatened
  • Listed
CITES
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 120
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 55