Dusky wrasse
  • Halichoeres marginatus
  • EnglishName: Dusky wrasse
  • Local Name : Mushi hikaa
  • Size : Max. 17 cm
  • Family: LABRIDAE
  • Order : Perciformes -, Distinctive Characters: Dorsal fin with 9 spines and 13-14 rays. Anal fin with 3 spines and 12-13 rays. Pectoral fin with 13-15 rays. Body depth 2.6-3.2 in standard length. Head naked, scales dorsally on nape extending to a vertical at rear edge of eye.
  • Colour: Females dark brown, with white caudal fin and two yellow edged dark spots on dorsal fin. Males brown with dark spots on each scale forming longitudinal lines; narrow blue lines on head; green bar on caudal base; yellow streak on pectoral fin. Juveniles black with yellow stripes.
  • Habitat and Biology: Prefers coastal rocky shores as well as the coral rich edges of the fringing reefs to depths of 30 m.
  • Distribution: Indo-Pacific.
  • Remarks: Halichoeres marginatus is a rather sombre species so easily overlooked, although the male on close inspection can be seen to be very attractive.