Greenfin Parrotfish, Chlorurus spilurus (Valenciennes 1840)
A terminal phase Bullethead Parrotfish, Chlorurus spilurus, in the Ningaloo Marine Park, Western Australia, August 2015. Source: John Turnbull / Flickr. License: CC BY Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike
Females (initial phase) are dark brownish-maroon with a pinkish/red snout and chin, and often two rows of white spots along the side.
Small juveniles are dark brown with four white stripes along the side. Larger juveniles gradually brownish-maroon anteriorly with a white tail and a white caudal peduncles surrounding a large dark spot.
Chlorurus spilurus is the correct name for populations in mainland Australia. Chlorurus sordidus occurs in the Red Sea and Indian Ocean, including the Australian territories of Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Christmas Island in the eastern Indian Ocean (see remarks).
Video of a huge school of Bullethead Parrotfish in Kane'ohe Bay, Hawaii.
Greenfin Parrotfish, Chlorurus spilurus (Valenciennes 1840)
|Rottnest Island north to offshore reefs of north Western Australia and Ashmore Reef in the Timor Sea, and the far northern Great Barrier Reef to southern Queensland (and possibly further south), and reefs in the Coral Sea; also at Elizabeth and Middleton reefs, and Lord Howe Island in the Tasman Sea. Elsewhere the species occurs in the East-Indo-west-central Pacific.|
|Population genetic studies have shown that what had previously been called Chlorurus sordidus, is a complex of two or more cryptic species, and that C. spilurus is the correct name for the Bullethead Parrotfish in Australian waters - excluding the territories of Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands.|
|The specific name spilurus is from the Greek spilos (= spot) and oura (= tail), presumably in reference to the large spot on the caudal peduncle in juveniles.|
|Scarus spilurus Valenciennes, in Cuvier & Valenciennes 1840, Histoire naturelle des poissons 14: 279. Type locality: Caroline Islands, western Pacific.|
Bray, D.J. 2020
Greenfin Parrotfish, Chlorurus spilurus (Valenciennes 1840)
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