Princess parrotfish in Samaná Bay, Dominican Republic
Dominican Republic | A princess parrotfish in Samaná Bay eats algae off a reef. © Jeff Yonover

Stories in the Caribbean

Pass On Parrotfish

Through a wide-reaching campaign, we are connecting with communities about the need to protect parrotfish to help save coral reefs.

#PassOnParrotfish is a collaborative campaign launched by TNC and partners in the Caribbean to raise awareness about the need to protect parrotfish to keep coral reefs healthy and thriving. Using social media and other outreach tools, we  encourage fishers, restaurants and consumers not to catch, sell or eat parrotfish because of the important role they play in maintaining coral reef health.

What exactly do these colorful fish do besides look beautiful as they swim through Caribbean waters? They spend about 90% of their day eating algae off the reefs! This almost-constant eating actually performs the essential task of cleaning the reefs which helps the corals thrive. Healthy reefs support more fish in the sea and promote marine biodiversity, which benefits everyone—from fishers to consumers to the entire next generation!

Aside from being vital to coral reef health, parrotfish also contribute to the sand on our beaches. They snack on the hard parts of coral which becomes a white sandy material in their stomachs that washes onto shore after parrotfish leave it behind on the reef. Who doesn’t love a sandy beach?

The #PassOnParrotfish campaign is part of the Caribbean Marine Biodiversity Program, which is funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development and implemented by TNC. To learn more, check out the video below and our Pass On Parrotfish digital magazine, which features stories from across the Caribbean about the ways we are working to protect parrotfish.

Pass On Parrotfish Parrotfish are currently overfished in the Caribbean, posing a threat to reefs and marine biodiversity.