Latin name

Pseudocheilinus hexataenia

Other names

Pseudocheilinus hexataenia


Fish with an elongated body covered with large cycloid scales. They have a small retractable mouth with thick and fleshy lips with wrinkles on the inside of the mouth. 

Features of fish fins 

Dorsal spines (total): 9; Dorsal soft rays (total): 11-12; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 9. 

Fish colouring

The fish is purple in color with six orange stripes on the sides. There is a small spot on the dorsal portion at the base of the caudal fin, a blue stripe along the base of the anal fin, and a blue stripe on the pelvic fin. This species has red eyes.


Indo-Pacific: Red Sea south to Natal, South Africa and east to the Tuamoto Islands, north to the Ryukyu Islands, south to Lord Howe and the Australian Islands. Range includes St. Brandon Shoals and Tadjoura Bay.


Tropical marine species. Occurs on coastal reefs between coral thickets. Also in clear coastal waters, in dense coral thickets on shallow reef crests or slopes at a depth of about 20 m.


A very small species of wrasse with a maximum total length of 10 centimeters (3.9 inches).


It is a secretive and fearful species, usually found in small groups swimming between coral branches for protection. 

They have been recorded to act as cleaner, removing ectoparasites such as copepods and isopods from other fish.

They are a diurnal species, sheltering in caves where they form a slimy cocoon in which they sleep at night. This cocoon is thought to protect them from nocturnal predators by masking the smell of the sleeping fish.

Food and feeding habits

It feeds mainly on small crustaceans.


Egg-laying, clearly mating during breeding. In the Japanese Izu Islands, spawning occurs just before sunset, and adults in pairs make a very rapid dash to the surface to spawn, the speed of this dash reducing the risk of predation by other fish. 


Fished for aquaristics.

Relationship with a person

A popular species in the aquarium hobby.

Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Squad Labriformes
Family Labridae
Genus Pseudocheilinus
Species P. hexataenia
Conservation status Least Concern
Habitat Pelagic
Life span, years No information
Maximum body weight, kg No information
Maximum length, cm 10
Sailing speed, m/s No information
Threat to people Not edible
Way of eating Planktonophage

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