Eastern Blue Groper
Scientific name: Achoerodus viridis
The Eastern Blue Groper is found along most of the eastern Australian coastline in a wide range of reef habitats and was made the NSW fish emblem in 1996. Despite the common name these fish are wrasse, not true gropers. The animals grow to a little over 1 metre in length and are possibly the most recognised fish by divers on the east coast.
Interestingly the Blue Groper is one of numerous species of fish that can change sex over its lifetime. All Blue Groper commence life as females but can become male later in life if the local dominant male dies. Females are smaller than males and are often brownish in colour. Males achieve a rich dark blue colour.