This fish gets its name because its teeth resemble the beak of a parrot.  The parrotfish uses its teeth to scrape algae from rocks & coral; when you are near a parrotfish under water, you can hear them chomping on the coral!  Parrotfish are very important to the ocean ecosystem.  By eating algae, they prevent plants from becoming overgrown & choking coral.  When they eat coral along with algae, the coral moves through their bodies and ground into sand. 

 One parrotfish can produce 198 lbs of sand each year!

 A number of parrotfish excrete a mucus cocoon, particularly at night.  Prior to going to sleep, some species extrude mucus from their mouths, forming a protective cocoon that envelops and secures the fish at a particular location and, presumably hides its scent from predators.  This mucus envelope may also act as an early warning system, allowing the parrotfish to flee when it detects predators such as disturbing the protective membrane.

 This is really something to witness in person!


About thescubalady

Leslie made her first ocean dive in the Cayman Islands,1982. She is passionate about sharing this beautiful underwater world with others!
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