The Ballan wrasse, Labrus bergylta, is a species of wrasse native to the northeastern Atlantic Ocean from Norway to Morocco, including the islands of Madeira, the Azores and the Canary Islands. They can be found at depths from 1 to 50Â m (3.3 to 164.0Â ft) amongst rocks, seaweed and reefs. It can grow to 65.9Â cm (25.9Â in) in total length (though most do not exceed 50Â cm (20Â in) standard length), and the greatest recorded weight of this species is 4.4Â kg (9.7Â lb). All Ballan wrasses are female for their first four to 14 years before a few change into males. Large Ballan wrasses are almost certainly male.
This species is popular as a food fish in the Orkney Islands and in Galway.
In recent years, it has become a popular catch-and-release target for sport fishermen using light fishing tackle, particularly those employing soft plastic lures.
This species can also be found in the aquarium trade.