Fish Identification: Creole Wrasse

This interesting member of the wrasse (pronounced “rass”) family is a common sighting on many a dive trip.

Physical description

Shape-wise, the creole wrasse looks like a typical wrasse---elongated body, slightly forked caudal fin, and rear-trailing dorsal and anal fins.

The creole wrasse’s colors change through its life. Juveniles are almost entirely a deep purple to violet color.

As the fish ages, it develops a yellow patch on the rear lower part of its body. The tail fin also becomes a bluish or black color.

Their bright coloring makes them a difficult sight to miss.

Geography and habitat

Creole wrasse are common through the Caribbean, southern Florida, and even up towards Bermuda.

You’ll find them living on coral reefs, often in small schools.

Further reading

Marine Species