Aquarium Fish

Checkerboard Wrasse

posted: 05/15/12
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Checkerboard Wrasse
Courtesy of Drs. Foster and Smith
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The juvenile Checkerboard Wrasse, also known as the Marble/Hortulanus Wrasse, is white with stripes, dots, and patches of black. With maturity, it becomes silver with a distinctive black checkerboard pattern on the body. The dorsal fin and tail are yellow, and the face is light green with orange to pink striped markings.

A 75 gallon or larger aquarium with a sealed lid, a 2-3 inch sandy bottom to hide under if frightened, and other peaceful wrasses, including its own species, is a suitable environment. In the tank, it will eat fireworms and pyramidellid snails, protecting corals and clams. In addition, it may eat feather dusters, wild shrimp, tubeworms, and flatworms.

Regular feedings should include a variety of prepared and live meaty foods such as feeder shrimps, flaked foods, and marine fish.

Fish Facts

Name: Checkerboard Wrasse (Halichoeres hortulanus)

Family: Labridae

Range: Red Sea, The Great Barrier Reef, Pacific

Size: Up to 11 inches

Diet: Carnivore

Tank Set-up: Marine: Gravel or sand

Reef Compatible: With caution

Tank Conditions: 72-78°F; sg 1.020-1.025; pH 8.1-8.4

Minimum Tank Capacity: 75 gallon

Light: High

Temperament: Peaceful

Swimming Level: No specific level

Care Level: Experts only

Reproduction: Egg Layer

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