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6 places to see Great Barrier Reef wildlife

5 of 6 5/6
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 humphead wrasse
5

Flynn Reef

Best for humphead wrasse

Coral gardens, clownfish, hawksbill turtles and relative proximity (60km) to Cairns make 4.2km2 Flynn Reef popular with live-aboard dive trips, day trip operators and tourist vessels. But it is worth sacrificing seclusion to meet its memorable resident, the endangered humphead (also known as a Napoleon or Maori) wrasse. This two metre long, multi-coloured fish lurks off the back of your boat sporting big lips, a hump on his forehead, a groovy facial pattern, and a permanently startled expression. This flirty fish is a hermaphrodite: when an alpha male dies, a female changes sex and becomes the new alpha. And curiously, this wrasse sometimes swims close enough to “kiss” your regulator. Perhaps he’s acquired a taste for bubbles?

Picture courtesy of Tanya Puntti/Shutterstock.com

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