Halichoeres chrysus

Yellow wrasse | Canary Wrasse | Golden Rainbow Fish | Golden Wrasse
Halichoeres chrysus
Halichoeres chrysus, adult, NSW, Australia, Photo: Ian Shaw
Halichoeres chrysus
Halichoeres chrysus, juvenile, Bali, Indonesia, Photo: Ian Shaw
Halichoeres chrysus
Halichoeres chrysus, WA, Australia, Photo: Rick Stuart-Smith
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Halichoeres chrysus
Halichoeres chrysus
Halichoeres chrysus


Temperate Australasia, Temperate northern Pacific, Tropical Indo-Pacific


Bright yellow body, black mark at start of dorsal fin, faint green lines on snout, andtransparent tail corners. Juveniles with two ocelli on dorsal fin and one on upper tail base. Similar golden stages of Thalassoma lutescens (Green Moon Wrasse) lack the transparent tail corners and small dorsal fin ocelli.


Max Size: 12 cm

Sea Temperature Range: 19.8-31°C

Depth: 2-70 m

Habitat Generalization Index: 3.36

Also referred to as the SGI (Species Generalisation Index), this describes the habitat niche breadth of the species. Species with values less than 15 are found in a relatively narrow range of reef habitat types (specialists), while those over 25 may be found on most hard substrates within their range (generalists). Learn more here.

Conservation and Rarity

IUCN Status: Least Concern

Occurrence: Infrequent (7.6% of sites)

Occurrence describes how often the species is found on surveys within its distribution. It is calculated as the % of reef sites surveyed by RLS divers across all the ecoregions in which the species has been observed

Abundance: Several (6 per transect)

Abundance is calculated as the average number of individuals recorded per RLS transect, where present.

Edit by: Joe Shields