Labroides bicolor   Fowler & Bean,  1928 (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Randall, J.E.

Size: 15 cm.

Color: In preserved specimens, head dark brown, anterior part of body still deeper brown or blackish violet, as far as an oblique line from below last dorsal spine to middle of anal. Basal scaly sheath of dorsal and anal also of that color. Rest of body and tail cream color, some of the scales with brown patches. Dorsal, anal and ventrals blackish violet. Dorsal and anal with a rather broad light greenish edge. Pectorals dusky. Caudal light greenish with a broad black subterminal crescent.

Height 3.9, 4.6 in length with caudal. Head 3, 3.4 in length with caudal. Height of head 1.9 in its length. Eye 6.6, 2.5 in snout and twice in slightly convex inter orbital space. Mouth very small, horizontal. Lips swollen, the upper lip longer than the lower one and with a median furrow. The lower lip divided into two lobes, connected by a transverse frenulum. Small pointed teeth in a single row in the side of the jaws and in an elongate patch near symphysis. This patch almost at right angles with the row of teeth on the sides. Two short but stout and almost straight canines in each jaw, slightly before the row of small teeth and situated at the point, where the row of the sides meets the symphysial patch. The canines of the lower jaw distant, those of the upper jaw fitting between them. Suborbital, preopercle and opercle covered with small scales, those of the opercle somewhat larger. Head naked above, the scales beginning here far behind eye. About 12 irregular rows of scales before dorsal. First dorsal spine shorter than eye, ninth spine somewhat more than eye. Longest rays almost as long as snout. First anal spine half as long as second which is slightly shorter than third. Third anal spine somewhat longer than longest dorsal spine. Soft anal as deep as soft dorsal. Pectorals equal to head without snout, ventrals with the first ray produced, about equal to post orbital part of head. Dorsal spines (total): 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 10-11; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 9-10.

Territorial around prominent coral formations called 'cleaning stations'. Juveniles generally solitary and quite secretive in caves while adults may wander over a large area in search of other fishes with ectoparasites. It feeds on ectoparasites (and mucus) of other fishes.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Fowlerella bicolor (Fowler & Bean, 1928)
(Senior synonym)
Labroides bicolor Hardenberg, 1936

Common Name (s)
• Bicolor Cleaner Wrasse (English)
• Bicolor cleanerfish (English)
• Two-colour cleaner (English)
• Two-colour cleaner wrasse (English)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial
(Aquarium fish)

Habitat:  Reef Associated
Trophic Level:  Secondary Consumer
Prey:  Fishes, benthic crustaceans


• Lakshadweep, Kavaratti Atoll (Lat: 10.55) (Long: 72.63) INDIA (Record: 01/1991-06/1992)

Literature Source(s)
  • Anand, PEV and Pillai, NGK (2003) Habitat distribution and species diversity of coral reef fishes in the reefslope of the Kavaratti atoll, Lakshadweep, India Journal of the Marine Biological Association of India The Marine Biological Association of India, Cochin 45(1) 88-98 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at -
  • Beaufort, LF (1940) The fishes of the Indo-Australian Archipelago A. J. Reprints agency, Karol Bagh, New Delhi 8 508 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Pillai, NGK (1995) Studies on some aspects of biology and ecology of coral reef fishes of Lakshadweep with observations on other coral reef ecosystems of India Mariculture Research under the Postgraduate Programme in Mariculture - Part 6 CMFRI Special Publication CMFRI 61 99-111 Available at -

Page last updated on:2010-12-15

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