Choati Leopard Wrasse (Macropharyngodon choati)

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The Choati Leopard Wrasse, also known as the Choat's Red Leopard Wrasse, is native to the eastern Australian Coast, primarily inhabiting southern areas of the Great Barrier Reef and northern New South Wales. These fish exhibit varying appearances based on their age and gender. Adults feature a white body adorned with red/orange spots, with pronounced red striping on the face and a yellow patch outlined in blue/green on their gill covers. Young Choati Red Leopard Wrasse display a semi-transparent white body with a few orange patches. Terminal phase males can be distinguished from females by their brightly colored faces, sporting an alternating green and orange striped pattern, along with yellow lips.

Belonging to the genus Macropharyngodon, these fish require a fine sandy substrate as they bury themselves at night for protection. They thrive in well-established aquariums, where they can naturally hunt for small crustaceans during the day.

While Leopard Wrasse can be challenging to acclimate to captivity, experienced reef aquarists who provide them with the proper care and environment can help them thrive and create a stunning display. It's best to introduce Leopard Wrasse to the display aquarium well before adding larger or more active fish, giving them time to settle in, adapt, and start feeding on prepared foods. When maintaining a small group, introducing them simultaneously is ideal, as the most dominant fish can change sex to become a fully functioning male.

The diet of Choat's Red Leopard Wrasse should include vitamin-enriched frozen mysis shrimp, frozen brine shrimp, and other meaty foods, along with high-quality marine flake and pellet foods.