Striped Rainbow Wrasse, Suezichthys bifurcatus Russell 1986

Other Names: Striped Trawl Wrasse, Striped Trawl-wrasse

A male Striped Rainbow Wrasse, Suezichthys bifurcatus. Source: Barry Hutchins / Western Australian Museum. License: All rights reserved

A brownish wrasse becoming paler below with a  narrow broken strip along the mid-upper side, a black mid-lateral stripe, irregular dark spots along the back and dorsal-fin base, a dark spot on the pectoral-fin base and yellow dorsal, anal and caudal fins (terminal phase - male).
Females and juveniles (initial phase) lack dark stripes along the side, and have a faint dusky band from the snout to the eye, a series of irregular dark spots along the scaly base of soft dorsal fin, the last spot extending onto base of last three dorsal-fin rays, a blackish mark dorsally on caudal-fin base, and a black spot on upper pectoral-fin base.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Suezichthys bifurcatus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 14 Jul 2020,

Striped Rainbow Wrasse, Suezichthys bifurcatus Russell 1986

More Info


Endemic to southern and south-western Australia, from southwest of Port Lincoln, South Australia, to Rottnest Island, Western Australia.
Inhabits rubble areas near algal-covered rocky reefs.


Occasionally taken as by-catch in bottom trawls.


The specific name bifurcatus refers to the  bifurcate laterosensory canal tube of this species.

Species Citation

Suezichthys bifurcatus Russell 1986, Trans. Roy. Soc. S. Aust. 110(2): 59, figs 1-2. Type locality: Great Australian Bight, WA. 


Bray, D.J. 2020


Atlas of Living Australia

Striped Rainbow Wrasse, Suezichthys bifurcatus Russell 1986


Gomon, M.F. &. Russell, B.C. 1994. Family Labridae. pp. 675-699 in Gomon, M.F., Glover, C.J.M. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds) The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. Adelaide : State Printer 992 pp. 810 figs.

Hoschke, A., Whisson, G & Moore, G.I. 2019. Complete list of fishes from Rottnest Island. pp. 150-161 in Whisson, G. & Hoschke, A. (eds) The Rottnest Island fish book. 2nd ed. Perth: Aqua Research and Monitoring Services.

Kuiter, R.H. 2002. Fairy & Rainbow Wrasses and their Relatives. Chorleywood, U.K. : TMC Publishing 207 pp. 

Kuiter, R.H. 2010. Labridae fishes: wrasses. Seaford, Victoria, Australia : Aquatic Photographics pp. 398.

Russell, B.C. 1986. A new species of Suezichthys (Pisces : Labridae) from the Great Australian Bight. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 110(2): 59-61. See ref at BHL

Russell, B.C. & Gomon, M.F. 2008. Family Labridae. pp. 638-659 in Gomon, M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp. 

Russell, B. & Sadovy, Y.J. 2010. Suezichthys bifurcatus . The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T154720A4617579. Downloaded on 28 October 2016.

Russell, B.C. & Westneat, M.W. 2013. A new species of Suezichthys (Teleostei: Perciformes: Labridae) from the southeastern Pacific, with a redefinition of the genus and a key to species. Zootaxa 3640(1): 88-94

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37384160


Conservation:IUCN Data Deficient

Depth:26-125 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:11 cm SL


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CAAB distribution map