Parrotfishes are a group of marine fishes that live in shallow tropical and subtropical oceans around the world. Previously considered to form a separate family (Scaridae), these fish are now thought to belong to the large family of wrasses (Labridae). Their numbers are largest in the Indo-Pacific region where they are found in and around coral reefs and seagrass beds. They play an important part in bioerosion. There are about 95 species of parrotfish living today.
Parrotfish are very colourful. Their name comes from the parrot-like beak formed by their teeth. The buccal cavity (cheek) of the parrotfish secretes the 'sleeping sack' that the fish sleeps in overnight. It is a semi-translucent sack which completely surrounds the parrot fish. In the morning the sack is discarded. You can see these on the sea bed floor during the following day.
- Westneat, M. W. and M. E. Alfaro (2005). "Phylogenetic relationships and evolutionary history of the reef fish family Labridae." Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 36(2): 201-428.
- Streelman, J. T., M. E. Alfaro, et al. (2002). "Evolutionary History of The Parrotfishes: Biogeography, Ecomorphology, and Comparative Diversity." Evolution 56(5): 961-971.
- Bellwood, D. R., Hoey, A. S., J. H. Choat. (2003). "Limited functional redundancy in high diversity systems: resilience and ecosystem function on coral reefs." Ecology Letters 6(4): 281–285.
- Lokrantz, J., Nyström, Thyresson, M., M., C. Johansson. (2008). "The non-linear relationship between body size and function in parrotfishes." Coral reefs 27(4): 967-974.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Scaridae.|
- Parrot Fish Profile from National Geographic Archived 2008-10-14 at the Wayback Machine
- Parrot Fish Care
- Parrotfish info on Fishbase