Bird Wrasse

The Bird Wrasse is an amazing coral reef fish. Oddly, they cannot really be defined by gender and age. Instead, they are either “initial” or “terminal”. Initial phase wrasses are born either male or female. Terminal phase bird wrasses are the very colorful, dominant fish of the species. They are always male, but they were always born female! An initial phase bird wrasse that was born male never becomes a dominant terminal phase male. Pretty confusing to us mammals. In my watercolor painting, you can see both an initial (light color with orange snout) and a terminal (dark blue/green) phase fish.