Home|Search|Identify|Taxonomic tree|Quiz|About this site|Feedback
Developed by ETI BioInformatics
Characteristics, distribution and ecology
Taxonomische classification
Synonyms and common names
Literature references
Images, audio and video
Links to other Web sites

Author: Linnaeus, 1758

Coris julis Linnaeus, 1758

Diagnosis: body slender, moderately compressed. Head small but longer than body depth. Snout pointed; mouth small. Preorbital length less than post-orbital. Generally 2 teeth rows. Teeth sharp (9-14/10-15), front teeth larger, prominent, curved. Snout with 4 6 cephalic pores. Spiny rays flexible. Dorsal finrays Vlll-X + 11-12; anal finrays 111 + 11-12. Scales minute; 73-80 along lateral line; rows of scales above lateral line 4.5. No scales on head and on base of dorsal and anal fins. Gill arch with 14-17 rather slender rakers. Vertebrae 25-26. Colour: brilliant coloration, sexual dimorphism. Males: first three dorsal rays elongated, with an orange or red and black spot. Back bluish, often olive-green, sometimes brown or greyish. Belly white, weakly marked with same colour as back. Along thc flanks a longitudinal zigzag orange or red stripe outlined with pale blue-green, a dark blue or black band below its anterior part. Old specimens with some vertical dark bars on sides. Females and juveniles: in shallow waters back brownish, belly white-yellowish; a longitudinal large whitish stripe along flanks, with a longitudinal zig-zag, dark brown stripe on its middle part. At greater depths the brown turns into red colour. Males, females and juveniles with a black spot on rear edge of gill cover. Size: to 25 cm SL, usually 15-20 cm.

Habitat: littoral, near rocks and eel-grass beds (1-120 m). Usually 1-60 m, only old males deeper. Occurs deeper during winter. Behaviour: sometimes solitary, among the rocks, often numerous specimens in immediate vicinity. Buries itsclf in sand at night or when frightened. Acts sometimes as cleaner. Food: Mediterranean: small gastropods, sea-urchins, shrimps, worms, isopods and amphipods. Reproduction: north-western Mediterranean coast in May August, southern part in April-August. Sexually mature when 1 year old. Sex reversal in some old females. Pelagic eggs.

Distribution: Mediterranean: common in the western basin (except Golfe du Lion). Adriatic (rare in the north part), and eastern basin. Southern part of Black Sea (rare). Eastern Allantic from Norway to south of Cape Lopez (rare north of Biscay), the Azores, Madeira, the Canaries.

Eggs, larvae and young stages. Raffaele, 1888: 35, pl. I (fig. 31), pl. 2 (fig. 18-19) | Holt, 1891: 467, pl. 48 (fig. 16), pl. 51 (fig. 43-45); 1899: 62, pl. 9 (fig. 103) | Lo Bianco, 1909: 711 | Fage, 1918: 52, fig. 37-41 | Ford, 1922: 693, fig. 8 | Ehrenbaum, 1927: 10, fig. 3a-b | Roule & Angel, 1930: 102, pl. V (fig. 133) | Sparta, 1933: 3, fig. 1-15 | Vodjanitzki & Kazanova, 1954: 274, pl. 27a-g | Sparta, 1956: 584, fig. 451-463 | Aboussouan, 1964: 132.
Otoliths (sagitta). Sanz Echeverría, 1926: 155, fig. 20 | Chaine, 1942: 104, 109 | Bauzá-Rullán, 1957: 16.

Rainbow-wrass (Coris julis)