Native to the western Indian Ocean, the goldbar wrasse is aptly named for the muted gold band that strikes like lightning down the side once the wrasse matures, dividing the vibrant blue body from the orange-brown head. The body is covered in vertical, yellow or green bars. Wrasses change their appearance dramatically from juvenile to adult, as striking blue-green lines emanate from behind and below the eyes, and the tip of the head turns a bright, light green while the forehead embraces a purple hue.
These incredibly active fish are always darting around the reef at high speeds, trying to live up to that lightning bolt on their sides, but all the activity makes the wrasse early to bed and late to rise. Goldbar wrasse are thought to have highly developed sensory organs, as they are the first to arrive and find it when bait is put out. They grow up to 23 cm and are found on shallow lagoon and seaward reefs. Like most others in the wrasse family, they are protogynous hermaphrodites, first developing as females before some are triggered by social cues to transform into males, who typically dominate a harem of females.• Rubber sole
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