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If you’ve ever enjoyed digging your toes into the fine white sand of a tropical beach, you have parrotfishes to thank.
These relatives of wrasses use their unique beaklike fused teeth—from which they get their common name—to scrape algae from corals. At the same time, parrotfishes also munch and crunch bits of stony coral skeleton. An additional set of molarlike teeth in their throats pulverizes the coral and the nutrients are digested.