Bloch & Schneider, 1801
Parrotfish owe their name to the shape of their mouth. Instead of teeth they have two beak-like plates, like parrots. They have even rows of large, noticeable scales on their bodies.
Terminal phase: Body green to blue-green. Mouth with blue to green and sometimes yellow markings. Pectoral fin with a light bar. Sometimes with a stripe at the base of the dorsal and anal fins; tail may have a light crescent marking (S. vetula terminal phase).
Size up to 61 cm.
Initial phase: Dark gray to black with a broad, white stripe, with diffuse edges, down the midbody (S. vetula-initial phase).
They swim about reefs using their pectoral fins; the tail is only used for burst of speed. They use their 'beaks' to scrape algae and polyps from corals and rocks. They are often seen defecating, what looks like white clouds, which consists mainly of coral limestone. Common to a depth of 25 m.
Like the wrasses, the parrotfishes have two types of reproductive behavior. The younger and not so colorful males fertilize together with other males the eggs of one single female, while colorful, large males have each their own territory where one male fertilizes one female.
Common south Florida, Bahamas and Caribbean.