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Fish Species of Gran Canaria – Parrot fish

Atlantic parrot fish

Our onsite marine biologist Divemaster TJ, has been busy writing fact-files about the species of Gran Canaria. Each week he has documented a different species that Leagues Ahead Diving see while under the water! This is to try and educate divers about the underwater world and raise awareness about ocean conservation!

Parrotfish

Parrotfish are mostly herbivores, grazing upon algae and keeping the surface clean for coral polyps to attach and grow. However, some species also eat coral. This is in fact how the tropical white sandy beaches came to be. They are basically made out of parrotfish poop. The breeding season is from July until September and it can happen in pairs or groups. As is the case with a variety of other fish species parrotfish are born female. This is called their initial stage. The females are red and yellow with a grey saddle. Some females change into males before reaching sexual maturity while others stay female. The males have a plain grey colour and are on average slightly bigger then the females. Some parrotfish species can create a mucus membrane around their body. They do this at night, probably to hide their scent from predators or as an early warning system when a predator disturbs the membrane.

 

Other fish species

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