Humphead parrot fish

Recently I was lucky enough to come across two humphead parrot fish on one of the eastern divesites on Koh Tao. This was my first siting of a humphead parrot fish and they were so fantastic to see that I felt compelled to do some research about them.

Green Humphead parrot fish

Humphead parrot fish


The green humphead parrot fish is also known as Bolbometopon muricatum. It is the largest species of parrot fish and can grow to a length of 1.3 m. The humphead can weigh up to 46 kg.

My friends the humphead parrot fish are part of the wrasse family.  However the parrotfish differs from wrasses in that it has a vertical head profile. it also differs from other parrot fishes because of the covering of scales it has (apart from on the leading edge of the head). It’s initial colouring is gray with  a scattering of white spots. This gradually becomes uniformly dark green

Over the 1 year an adult fish can ingest over five tons of structural reef carbonates! This does have a significant impact on the bioerosion of reefs. At night the parrotfish will sleep in large groups. Usually in shipwrecks or caves.

After some research i discovered these beautiful fish are widely threatened by fishermen. This is mainly from spearfishing so i was lucky to be able to see them up close. Hopefully this is a sign of the diversity of the species of fish on our beautiful island increasing.

by Dani


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