Microspathodon chrysurus Cuvier, 1830, St. Thomas Island.
OTHER COMMON NAMES
English: Jewelfish (as juveniles); French: Chaffet queue jaune; Spanish: Jaqueta rabo amarillo.
Length 8.3 in (21 cm). Juveniles typically dark blue with sky blue spots on all but the yellow tail. Adults are golden brown with dark-outlined scales and a yellow tail.
Western Atlantic Ocean near Bermuda, also from northern South America to the West Indies and southern Florida, United States, and into the southern Gulf of Mexico.
Shallow waters of shelter-filled coral reefs, usually associated with yellow stinging coral.
When food is abundant, shares feeding area with other wrasses, but will weakly defend a territory if food is limited. Juveniles sometimes engage in cleaner activities.
FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET
Prefers grazing on algae, but also takes invertebrates, especially coral polyps.
Spawns mostly during semiannual periods. As males prepare nests, their coloration lightens. Female coloration brightens as they arrive to lay their eggs. Males tend and guard the eggs.
Not listed by the IUCN.
SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS
Occasional food fish and aquarium fish.
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