Crimsonband Wrasse

Notolabrus Gymnogenis
Crimsonband Wrasse - Marinewise © 2024 MarineWise

Quick Facts

Scientific name Notolabrus Gymnogenis
Other names Crimsonbanded Parrotfish, Spotted Rainbowfish, Whitespotted Rainbowfish
Size Up to 50 cm (19.6 in)
Weight Up to 1.5 kg (3.3 lb)


Habitat & AU Distribution Coastal waters amongst kelp covered rocks & reefs
Depth Range 2 - 50 m (164 ft)
Crimsonband Wrasse Distribution

Interesting Info

  • The Crimsonband Wrasse is a species of marine fish that is found along the southern coast of Australia, including Queensland to Tasmania.
  • The Crimsonband Wrasse has a slender, elongated body shape with a pointed snout and large eyes. Its body is covered in small, smooth scales, and its fins are rounded and pointed.
  • Males of the species have a vibrant crimson-red band that runs horizontally along the upper part of their body, from their head to their tail. The band is typically bordered by a thin blue line above and below it. The rest of the male’s body is usually greenish-blue or brown, with small white or yellow spots scattered over the fins and body. In contrast, females are generally pale yellow or pink in colour, with faint horizontal lines on their body, and lack the distinct crimson band that males have.
  • They are a carnivorous fish that feeds primarily on small invertebrates such as crustaceans, molluscs, and worms.
  • They are protogynous hermaphrodites, with some females transforming into males when a dominant male dies or leaves the breeding population.
  • The Crimsonband Wrasse breeds from September to March in southern hemisphere, with males displaying their crimson band to attract females for mating. During courtship, the male leads the female to a crevice or cave on the reef, and deposits sperm into the female’s body cavity to fertilise her eggs.
  • Estimated lifespan is up to 25 years.
Species Interaction

Recreational Fishing, Aquarium, Snorkeling & Diving

Crimsonband Wrasse are often caught as bycatch for anglers targeting other species. They are typically a catch and release species. They are more know for their striking colours and are a popular species for aquariums and to observe in the wild for snorkelers and divers.

Scientific Classification

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Actinopterygii

Order: Perciformes

Family: Labridae

Genus: Notolabrus

Species: Notolabrus Gymnogenis

Conservation Status

The conservation status of the Crimsonband Wrasse in Australia is currently listed as “Least Concern” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List. This means that they are not currently considered to be at risk of extinction and their population is believed to be stable.

Fish Taste Quality

Crimsonband wrasse are considered to be a good eating fish and are sometimes caught by recreational anglers. Their meat is white, firm, and has a mild, sweet flavour.

Taste Rating: 3/5

How to catch
Crimsonband Wrasse

Catch Difficulty: Easy

Tackle: Running Sinker Rig

Bait: Fresh cut flesh baits, Pilchards, Prawns, Squid, Worms

Technique: Keep bait on the bottom, Keep bait close to the reef/structure

Popularity: Not targeted

Crimsonband Wrasse
As Aquarium Fish

Care Level: Easy to moderate

Temperament: Peaceful

Diet: Carnivore

Reef Compatible: Yes

Minimum Tank Size: 100 gallons

Recreational Viewing
- Snorkeling & Scuba

Finding: Easy

Temperament: Peaceful

Location: Inner Reef, Outer Reef, Lagoon

Danger: None