Cache of the original article Marine systems are often thought of as the pinnacle of the aquarium hobby, and tank sales are integral to pet specialty retail survival and success. Marine tanks provide a competitive advantage for retailers, help bring in new customers and open a gateway for additional sales. Nano aquariums continue to be one of the...
With its blue body and yellow caudal fin, it would be easy to mistake the Similar Damselfish for the ubiquitous Yellowtail Damselfish (Chrysiptera parasema). The two, however, are only distant relatives and can be told apart by the differences in their body shape, fin morphology and the details of their color patterns. For instance, the yellow fin of P. similis is bordered along the edge in blue, and in C. parasema it fades to clear.
The Porthole Rasbora is a lesser-known species in the aquarium trade, but it’s robust proportions (roughly five inches when fully grown) and sleek good looks make it an excellent choice. While it might not turn heads with its muted color palette, it makes up for any chromatic deficiencies with a diverse mix of stripes and reticulations that lend this fish a quiet charm all its own.
From the remote island of Mauritius comes an exceptionally elusive wrasse which few have had the good fortune to keep in an aquarium, Halichoeres pelicieri. The species was only described to science in 1982, and the very first specimen ever collected was from a hook and line set at 85 meters by Daniel Pelicier, for whom this fish is now named. This should give a pretty good idea for why this species is so uncommon; it only occurs in deeper waters. The shallowest this fish is ever encountered is at around 20 meters, and these have to be collected in open, sandy habitats. The difficulties of successfully corralling such an active fish at these depths and in this sort of habitat is immense.
It might not be apparent at first glance, but the Radiant Wrasse (Halichoeres iridis), with its deep burgundy coat, is a close relative to one of the yellowest fishes in the sea, the Canary Wrasse (H. chrysus). They occur on different sides of the Indo-Pacific, but, aside from these minor details, theyre basically identical in all other aspects of their biology and ecology.
The Inca Stone Cichlid is a little fish with a big name. Just try to pronounce this one… Tahuantinsuyoa macantzatza. The tricky nomenclature derives from the Quechua Indians of Peru. The genus name is their word for the Inca empire, while the species name translates as “stone fish”, in reference to the rocky bottom of the streams where this cichlid occurs.
Alien like looks, spots that pop, inquisitive nature that is what draws me toward these awesome fish called Oxymonocanthus longirostris. Orange spot filefish are obligate coralivores with a poor track record in captivity. In this Dream Fish segment, I will talk about the ultimate factors that allow success or failure with this species.
Arowanas are a fascinating and ancient group of fishes, with just six species today spread across the planet. In the Americas we have the Silver and Black Arowanas (Osteoglossum), while the remainder are classified in Scleropages. These four fishes are restricted to various regions in the West Pacific. The most famous, the Asian Arowana (S. formosa) is widespread in parts of Southeast Asia and Indonesia and often sells for large sums in the Asian aquarium trade, but, alas, due to conservation concerns, this species is not allowed to be sold in the US. The recently described S. inscriptus is an even rarer fish known from Myanmar, and it too is unavailable.
The beautiful little basslets in the genus Pseudanthias are full of color and splendor, but few of the species in this highly diverse group can match the magnificence of the Painted Anthias (P. pictilis). Males sport a neon purple on the forebody that contrasts spectacularly against the crimson of the rear, with vertical bands of purple and white helping to add a bit of visual excitement. Females are a different beast altogether, adorned in a coat of magenta and yellow that calls to mind the similar look of P. bimaculatus.
There has been a fair bit of research published in recent years on the evolutionary history of angelfishes. One of the most surprising results from these studies is support for the relatively distant relationship between the various dwarf angelfishes. These are mostly classified in the large genus Centropyge, but, in truth, miniaturization appears to be a phenomenon that has happened on multiple occasions within the family.