Damselfish

Damselfish

 

Damselfish are some of the smaller fish on the reef, seen close to the reef, using the coral fingers as shelter, and anemones as homes. Chromis are scared easily, and if startled will shoot back close to the reef for protection. The larger sergeant majors are swimming in the water column by themselves, or the smaller blue green chromis are floating in large shoals above the reef.

Caerulean Damsel © WiseOceans

Caerulean Damsel © WiseOceans

Caerulean Damsel (Pomacentrus caeruleus)

As one of the more colourful damselfishes, Caerulean damselfish are easily identified by its striking blue body and yellow stomach, pectoral fins and tail. They are seen close to the reef, hovering above coral heads for protection. Although they look reasonable small, Caerulean damsels can reach up to 10cm.

Blue-green Chromis © WiseOceans

Blue-green Chromis © WiseOceans

Blue-green chromis (Chromis viridis)

Blue-green chromis are found in-between coral fingers and hovering just above the reef. They use the coral for protection, so when a snorkeler or diver gets too close to the coral they quickly dart into their coral shelter. Blue-green chromis are one of the smaller fish present on the reef, reaching only 8cm. They have no distinct markings, but are identified by their blue to pale green colour. (up to 9cm)

Sergeant Major © WiseOceans

Sergeant Major © WiseOceans

Sergeant Major (Abudefduf vaigiensis)

Sergeant majors are very common on the reef. They can be seen by themselves, or in groups in the water column. They are curious fish and often swim close to snorkelers. They can be identified by their classic damselfish shape, and by their white and black bands. (up to 19cm).

All photos © WiseOceans unless otherwise stated

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