Parrotfish get their name from their beak like teeth which they use to break large chunks out of coral. They grind the coral down to sand, extract the algae and any other nutrients, the remaining sand comes out as a stream which slowly floats down to the reef below. It is eventually swept up by currents and ends up as a main component of many tropical beaches.
The majority of parrotfish species start their life as females with drab colours. As they get older they transform into males and develop much brighter and colourful patterns. It is these colourful patterns which attract many divers and snorkellers and make them love the parrotfish.
At night parrotfish will find a hole amongst the coral to hide. They will create a bubble around their body from saliva. This bubble helps to hide them by preventing their smell from travelling around the reef and attracting predators.
Learn about other marine life with the rest of this blog series.
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