The ballan wrasse is a deep bodied, fully scaled member of the Labridae family with a pointed but not elongated mouth which contains prominent teeth and thick lips. Sandra Deady, Julie M. Fives, Diet of ballan wrasse, Labrus bergylta , and some comparisons with the diet of corkwing wrasse, Crenilabrus melops , Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 10.1017/S0025315400039072, 75, 3, (651-665), (2009). The Ballan Wrasse rarely exceeds depths of 30 meters, making it a great animal to see whilst snorkelling or diving. In the summer wrasse make nests of seaweed that are wedged between rocks. Widespread in the British Isles. It also has powerful jaws armed with small teeth. For the fish—the ballan wrasse—the T-shaped bone, with its row of teeth, served as a powerful tool to grind its mollusk dinner; for the sailor, it offered powerful protection against bad luck. They will eat crustaceans, mussels, crabs and even barnacles which they prize off rocks with their powerful teeth and jaws. Specimen 4.75bs, or 2.154 kilo. Ballan wrasse can grow to over 60 cm making them by far the biggest of the wrasse species found in U.K. The peg-like front teeth are bright white in colour and are only used for tearing. Crab baits work best when fishing for wrasse. Anatomy. Many species can be readily recognized by their thick lips, the inside of which is sometimes curiously folded, a peculiarity which gave rise the German name of "lip-fishes" (Lippfische. Ballan wrasse, like all wrasse, survive mainly on shellfish. )The dorsal fin has 8–21 spines and 6–21 soft rays, usually running most of the length of the back. Ballan Wrasse: The ballan wrasse is a sturdy fish with a thick body which is green or red/rust brown in colour; it can sometimes be tinted blue and has a pleasant pattern with a pale underbelly.The ballan wrasse also has a single dorsal fin which is present across its entire body and has a broad tail fin. They are called pharyngeal teeth and are capable of crushing hard shells to a fine powder, which the fish then spits out. Wrasses have protractile mouths, usually with separate jaw teeth that jut outwards. Identification. Breeding. Where To Find Them. Ballan Wrasse (Labrus bergylta) Irish Record 4.3 Kilo taken on 20.08.1983 by Bertrand Kron at Clogher Head. The largest of the UK wrasse species, ballan wrasse have incredibly strong teeth which they use to pull molluscs and barnacles off the rocks, before extra teeth in their throats crush shells and finish the job. Predators & Threats. They are quite capable of inflicting a very nasty wound on a human, so it’s not a good … Appearance. 2) Ballan wrasse have a second set of teeth in their throat. The colour of the ballan varies from venue to venue and may range from greeny-brown through green to red. Dense fleshed fish with heavy, thick scales designed to protect the body from impact and damage. Ballan Wrasse. You will sometimes see this large fish surrounded by smaller rock cooks, who clean its parasites. They have a very stout appearance and a large head, snout and lips. Prominent, flexible lips and strong teeth allow Wrasse to feed on a variety of food stuffs. The Ballan Wrasse possesses a strong jaw that is lined by teeth which are used for grasping and crushing small shellfish and crustaceans. Diet. They are an example of a hermaphroditic fish with all ballan wrasse being born female and changing into males at a later stage in their life. ‘I remember catching a ballan wrasse and, on unhooking it, being surprised to find thick white teeth of the sort you might expect to see in a human mouth.’ ‘The local ballan wrasse made a few passes to check out the new guests in their neighbourhood, and now and then … More crushing teeth are to be found on the pharyngeal bones in the throat. The Ballan Wrasse the largest and most common fish of the wrasse family. The wrasse grinds its food down with a set of pharyngeal teeth located further back in the mouth. 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