Pastel-green Wrasse

Halichoeres Chloropterus
Pastel-green Wrasse - Marinewise © 2023 MarineWise

Quick Facts

Scientific name Halichoeres Chloropterus
Family Wrasse / Labridae
Size Up to 19 cm (7.4 in)
Weight Up to .40 kg (.88 lb)


Habitat & AU Distribution Coastal waters amongst inshore reefs, sandy & rubble areas
Depth Range 1 - 30 m (98 ft)
Pastel-green Wrasse Distribution

Interesting Info

  • The Pastel-green Wrasse is found in the waters of Western Australia, Northern Territory, and Queensland.
  • The species is characterised by a pastel green body, a pink stripe on its flanks, and a black spot on its dorsal fin. The coloration of the head can vary depending on the angle and lighting conditions, but it is generally consistent with the green or yellow-green coloration of the body.
  • They are omnivores and their diet includes small invertebrates such as crustaceans, molluscs, and worms, as well as algae and other plant matter.
  • These fish are active swimmers and are known for their curious behaviour. They are often observed swimming in pairs or small groups.
  • They are a diurnal fish, meaning it is active during the day and rests at night.
  • The Pastel-green Wrasse is a protogynous hermaphrodite, which means that they are born female and may later transition to male.
  • The breeding habits of this species are not well known, but they are believed to spawn during the summer months. They are oviparous, meaning they lay eggs.
  • Estimated lifespan is up to 10 years.
Species Interaction

Recreational Fishing, Aquarium, Snorkeling & Diving

Patel-green wrasse are often caught as bycatch for anglers targeting other species. They are typically a catch and release species. They are more known for their striking colours and are a popular species for aquariums and to observe in the wild for snorkelers and divers. Although in captivity they can be hard to manage due to specialised dietary requirements and active nature or needing space.

Scientific Classification

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Actinopterygii

Order: Perciformes

Family: Labridae

Genus: Halichoeres

Species: Halichoeres Chloropterus

Conservation Status

The conservation status of the pastel-green wrasse in Australia is currently listed as “Least Concern” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Fish Taste Quality

Patel-green wrasse are considered to be okay eating fish. They have firm, white flesh that is said to be mild and slightly sweet in flavour. They are considered bycatch and often released.

Taste Rating: 2/5

How to catch
Pastel-green Wrasse

Catch Difficulty: Easy

Tackle: Running Sinker Rig

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

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

Popularity: Not targeted - Bycatch

Pastel-green Wrasse
As Aquarium Fish

Care Level: Moderate to difficult

Temperament: Peaceful

Diet: Omnivore

Reef Compatible: Yes

Minimum Tank Size: 80 gallons

Recreational Viewing
- Snorkeling & Scuba

Finding: Intermediate

Temperament: Peaceful

Location: Inner Reef, Outer Reef, Lagoon

Danger: None

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