These small reef fish have evolved to make themselves immune to regular attacks from larger predatory fish by offering a much needed service.
Most fish develop camouflage to prevent themselves from being eaten or have schooling behaviour to confuse their attackers. The cleaner wrasse has bold bright colours and a distinct shape, so rather than live in fear this clever little guy survives death by cleaning the parasites that inhabit the gills, fins and scales of other fish. Some fish even get dental from these guys, that’s very trusting of the cleaner wrasse.
The cleaner wrasse has what is known as a cleaning station, so fish actually have a location of where to clean up. The wrasse draws attention to his station by performing a dance to show he is ready for customers.
There are some species of fish that mimic this clever fish. Species such as the false cleaner fish (aspidontus taeniatus) look almost identical and even display the same dances, however this imposter will get his nutritional intake by taking a bite out of the unsuspecting customer.