Hologymnosus doliatus   (Lacepede,  1801) (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: John E. Randall

Max. size: 37 cm

Color: Juveniles whitish with 3 narrow orange-red stripes. Initial phase pale greenish, bluish, or pinkish with 20 to 23 orangish brown bars on side of body; a bluish black spot on opercular flap; caudal fin pinkish to yellowish with a narrow pale blue upper and lower edge and light orange submarginal band. Terminal male phase with a deep blue to purple bar passing from origin of dorsal fin beneath pectoral fin onto abdomen, followed by a broad light red bar; body posterior to this light red, shading to pale blue-green ventrally, with about 14 lavender-blue bars and 2 or 3 longitudinal bands of the same colour on caudal peduncle; head blue to blue-green with a coarse network of narrow orange to pink bands; a small blackish spot on opercular flap followed by a pale yellow zone; caudal fin green with narrow light blue upper and lower margins, a broad submarginal violet band in each lobe, and narrow longitudinal violet streaks in central and posterior part of fin.

Body elongate, the depth 3.8 to 5.3 times in standard length. Dorsal profile of head nearly straight, though slightly convex in large individuals; head forming an acute angle; jaws prominent, though mouth small; 4 prominent canines anteriorly in each jaw; no enlarged tooth at rear of upper jaw. Dorsal fin continuous, with 9 spines and 12 soft rays; the spines and anterior soft rays of similar length; anal fin with 3 spines and 12 soft rays; pectoral fins with 2 unbranched and 11 branched rays, short, 1.9 to 2.1 times in head; caudal fin double emarginate, the caudal concavity of large males about 11 times in head. Lateral line abruptly curved below posterior portion of dorsal fin base, with 97 to 112 pored scales. Scales not extending onto bases of dorsal and anal fins; head scaleless, except for nape.

Synonym (s)
Hologymnos doliatus (Lacepede, 1801)
Labrus doliatus Lacepede, 1801

Common Name (s)
• Pastel Wrasse (English)
• Pastel Ringwrasse (English)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
(Fisheries, marketed fresh; aquarium)

Habitat:  Reef Associated, Rocky
Prey:  Small fishes, crustaceans, and to a lesser extent on brittlestars and polychaetes


• Lakshadweep, Kavaratti Atoll (Lat: 10.55) (Long: 72.63) INDIA (Record: 01/1991-06/1992)
• Tamil Nadu, Cuddalore (Lat: 11.7) (Long: 79.76) INDIA (Record: 01/2004-12/2004)

Literature Source(s)
  • Anand, PEV and Pillai, NGK (2005) Community organization of coral reef fishes in the rubble sub-habitat of Kavaratti Atoll, Lakshadweep, India Journal of the Marine Biological Association of India The Marine Biological Association of India, Cochin, India 47(1) 77-82 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at - http://www.fishbase.org
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at - http://www.marinespecies.org
  • Encyclopedia of Life Available at - http://www.eol.org/
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51) FAO, Rome 2 Available at - http://www.fao.org/docrep/009/ad468e/ad468e00.HTM#Contents
  • Khan, SA; Ramesh, S and Lyla, PS (2008) Diversity of coral reef fishes in cuddalore waters, south-east coast of India Indian Journal of Fisheries Indian Council of Agricultural Research 55(3) 221-226 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at - eprints.cmfri.org.in/3975/1/Special_Publication_No_12_Revised.pdf

Page last updated on:2011-12-05

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