Species encyclopedia

Bluestreak Cleaner Wrasse

Labroides dimidiatus


Cleaner wrasse are hermaphroditic fish: they are all born male and transform into females over the course of their lives.

They sometimes organize in harems and then, when the male dies, one of the females changes and takes his place.

During reproduction, after a lively parade and a ritual dance, the two partners set off toward the surface to release their sex cells. The eggs hatch in the open water 24 hours later.

This species feeds on parasitic crustaceans and on dead skin and mucus from other fish.


Cleaner wrasse maintain symbiotic relationships with other fish. They rid them of their parasites and their dead skin. They tend to frequent a specific area of a reef, where they attract their ‘customers’ using their lengthwise stripe and a characteristic dance.

A fish from the blenny family imitates the shape and colours of the bluestreak cleaner wrasse. Thanks to this resemblance, it is able to approach other fish and rip off their integuments and scales to feed on.

Indo-Pacific region


Species encyclopedia

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