While not all of the rare fish listed below are deep sea creatures, the vast oceans beds thousands of meters below our daily lives is where majority of the these rare fish exist. Maybe with time we will discovery that they in fact are not that rare at all, and just that we have not been looking hard enough. Here’s the list:
1) Mandarin dragonet (Synchiropus splendidus)
The Mandarinfish or Mandarin dragonet (Synchiropus splendidus), is a small, brightly-colored member of the dragonet family, which is popular in the saltwater aquarium trade. The mandarinfish is native to the Pacific, ranging approximately from the Ryukyu Islands south to Australia.
Mandarinfish are reef dwellers, preferring sheltered lagoons and inshore reefs. While they are slow-moving and fairly common within their range, they are not easily seen due to their bottom-feeding habit and their small size (reaching only about 6 cm). They feed primarily on small crustaceans and other invertebrates.
2.) African Cichlids (Chalinochromis)
A lot of the famous African cichlids hail from one of the Great Rift Valley lakes on the African continent; chiefly Lake Malawi, Lake Victoria or Lake Tanganyika. There are however a wide range of interesting cichlid species that comes from other African rivers and lakes. The River Nile, River Niger, River Zaire, River Gambia and River Zambezi are all inhabited by cichlids. The Okavango River Delta, the Sierra Leone regions and Lake Volta and Lake Albert are other places where you can find cichlids. The rainforest in Central Africa is also home to numerous cichlid species. Generally speaking, these waters are acidic, but some of them are alkaline so it is important that you research your particular species in order to find out its requirements.
3. Regal Tang (Paracanthurus hepatus)
The Regal Tang is known by a long list of alternate names, including the Blue Tang, Pacific Blue Tang, Palette Tang, Blue Hippo Tang, Wedgetail Blue Tang, Hepatus Tang, Blue Surgeonfish and the Yellow Tailed Blue Tang. When referred to as the Blue Tang it can be confused with the Caribbean Blue Tang (Acanthurus coeruleus), which explains why it is often referred to as the Pacific Blue Tang. The Regal Tang was popularized by the movie Finding Nemo, in which the character Dory was a Regal Tang. The name “tang” is derived from German and refers to their predisposition toward seaweed.
The Regal Tang is a member of the surgeonfish family. The surgeon name refers to two sharp spines that stick out at the caudal peduncle – the area where the tail joins the rest of the body. The spines are easily tangled in nets. Regals will use these spines to wedge themselves into coral, so don’t injure them by panicking and trying to remove them. The mouth on tangs is very small and the body is compressed laterally. The Regal’s body is a beautiful blue oval with a black swirl that is reminiscent of an artist’s palette. The caudal fin is yellow with a black edge along the margins.
Regals occur naturally in the western Pacific. They are common throughout the Great Barrier Reef of Autstralia. The Philippines and Indonesia are common areas to catch these fish. Regal Tangs are not a great choice for beginners, although they are one of the most popular fish for aquariums. The Regal is susceptible to parasitic diseases and also suffers if their diet is inadequate. Among the most common diseases are saltwater ich, velvet, hole in the head disease and head & lateral line erosion. A well rounded shape is an indication of a healthy Regal Tang.
4.) Blueface Angelfish (Pomacanthus Xanthometopon)
The Blueface Angelfish occurs in the Indo-Pacific, from the Maldives to Vanuatu, north to the Yaeyama Islands, and Palau and Krosae in Micronesia. It is found from 25°N to 24°S.
The Blueface Angelfish inhabits lagoon, channels and outer reef slopes with prolific algae growth. They like to stay near caves and will normally live solitary. The depth range for this species is 5 – 25 meters / 16-82 feet.
The Blueface Angelfish is an omnivore species. In the wild, it feeds chiefly on tunicates and sponges and other encrusting organisms, and will also eat algae. In the aquarium, it needs both meaty and algae-based food. You can for instance give it various types of shrimp combined with spirulina and marine algae. Natural algae growth should be encouraged in the aquarium. It is also a good idea to purchase a high-quality angelfish preparation that contains sponge material and add this to the diet. This fish can be easily trained to accept dead food
5.) Clown Triggerfish (Balistoides conspicillum).
he Clown triggerfish is an eye-catching species and the most popular trigger species. It is also as far as we know the only triggerfish that has been bred in home aquariums. It is readily available in fish stores and can be ordered online. It is however often quite expensive.
It has a brown body and the lower half of it is covered in large white spots. The mouth is surrounded by a yellow field whit a white edge. On its back the Clown triggerfish has a yellow to gold colored field. The tailfin peduncle is sometimes, but not always, of the same yellow/gold color
The Clown triggerfish is easy to feed and will accept most food types including flake food. In the wild they are omnivorous and the main part of their diet consists of sea urchins and other invertebrates. Feed your Clown triggerfish a varied diet including meaty food and vegetables.
6.) French Angelfish (Pomacanthus paru)
The French Angelfish (Pomacanthus paru) is commonly referred to as the French Angel in everyday speech. It is a popular aquarium fish and is also sold fresh as food fish, particularly in Singapore and Thailand. Reports of ciguatera poisoning exist.
The French Angelfish (Pomacanthus paru) is easily confused with the closely related Grey Angel (Pomacanthus arcuatus).
Pomacanthus paru has not been evaluated for the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
This species is oviparous and monogamous. Spawning pairs are strongly territorial and usually both partners defend vigorously their territory against neighboring pairs.
The flesh of the French angel has good taste and the fish is sold on fish markets. The species has been reared in captivity.
Sponges constitute 70% of the species’ diet and since sponges are plentiful the fish is normally well fed. It covers sponge pieces in thick mucous to help digestion
7.) Juvenile(Emperor angelfish)
The Emperor Angelfish (Pomacanthus imperator) is also known as Imperial Angelfish and Imperator Angelfish. The name is commonly shortened to Emperor Angel / Imperial Angel / Imperator Angel in everyday speech.
Pomacanthus imperator has not been evaluated for the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
The largest scientifically measured Emperor Angelfish was 40.0 cm / 15.7 in.
The juvenile fish has a bluish black body adorned with concentric white circles. The dorsal fin margin is also white. Juveniles will change into their adult colouration over the size range 8-12 cm / 3-5 in.
8.) Lyretail Anthias (Pseudanthias squamipinnis)
The Lyretail Anthias is the social butterfly of marine aquariums. This eye-catching fish is incredibly active and helps draw out shier fish that share the aquarium. The Lyretail Anthias is also known as the Scalefin and the males have bright red coloration of varying hues while the female Lyretail Anthias tends to be more orange in coloration.
The Lyretail Anthias does best when kept in a group and housed in a species-specific aquarium of at least 125 gallons in size. Male Lyretail Anthias are best kept alone or with several females. Though the Lyretail Anthias generally occupy the middle of the aquarium, it appreciates the availability of several hiding places.
The lyretail anthias lives above coral reefs in the wild and your aquarium need to mimic the conditions they faces in the wild. This includes rapid current, hiding places and open water.
To provide them with a suitable environment you should make sure that the aquarium has strong circulation with a few calmer areas where tired lyretail anthias can rest. The aquarium should contain a lot of caves among live rocks. Try to provide them with a couple of large overhang where they can rest when they want to come out of the light. Feel free to include corals in the decoration. Make sure that you leave plenty of open space for your lyretail anthias to swim on when you decorate the aquarium. They prefer a not too brightly lit aquarium
9 .)The moorish idol (Crowned Scythe)
The Moorish Idol is also commonly known in Hawaii as “Kihikihi” which means “curves,” “corners,” or “zigzags,” and refers to its shape and color pattern. It is the only member of the family Zanclidae, and a very close relative of the Tangs or Surgeonfish. One of the most widespread fish, it can be found throughout the Indian Ocean, Red Sea, and all of the tropical Pacific. Wild specimens can attain a length of 7 inches, but 4 inches is more likely in the aquarium.
The Moorish Idol tends to be very peaceful. Due to its size, schooling nature, and need for swimming space, it requires a large aquarium of at least 125 gallons. As its beauty is most evident while swimming, giving it adequate room is well rewarded. It is compatible with most fish and larger invertebrates, but should not be kept with any polyps or corals, which it will eat. Small invertebrates may be threatened as well.
Pufferfish the second–most poisonous vertebrates in the world, after the golden poison frog. Certain internal organs, such as liver, and sometimes the skin, are highly toxic to most animals when eaten; nevertheless, the meat of some species is considered a delicacy in Japan (as 河豚, pronounced as fugu), Korea (as bok) when prepared by chefs who know which part is safe to eat and in what quantity.
The Tetraodontidae contain at least 120 species of puffers in 19 genera. They are most diverse in the tropics and relatively uncommon in the temperate zone and completely absent from cold waters. They are typically small to medium in size, although a few species can reach lengths of greater than 100 centimetres (39 in).
11.) Snakeskin Discus (Symphysodon spp.)
With many names based on colored varieties resulting from controlled breeding, Symphysodon aequifasciatus is referred to as the Snakeskin Discus. The Snakeskin Discus has a mottled blue appearance against a red background. The overall coloration of Discus will vary depending on mood and overall health of the fish. The Discus has surpassed the Angelfish as the most popular freshwater aquarium fish. Depending on sub-species, the natural range of the Discus extends from the Amazon to the Rio Negro Regions of South America.
The Snakeskin Discus requires an advanced level of care due to its feeding habits and water filtration requirements. Territorial during spawning, this otherwise peaceful fish is among the schooling group, forming a well-defined nuclear family.
Becoming slightly territorial when breeding, it is best to breed an established pair, or maintain a group of young Discus and allow them to pair themselves. Warm, soft, slightly acidic water is required for spawning. The pair will clean a flat surface (usually a broad leaf or the side of the aquarium) prior to spawning. The parents must not be removed from the fry; the fry feed on their parents’ mucus.
Largely carnivorous, Symphysodon aequifasciata prefer freeze-dried bloodworms and tubifex, pellet food designed for Discus, high-quality flake food, and meaty frozen foods.
12.) Striped butterflyfish
This fish is most often found at depths of 30-50 feet in beds of long finger coral, along coral ledges and sand channels, but can be found in shallower areas of the reef as well.
Although at first a rather shy and easily frightened fish, once it settles in to its surroundings falls into the moderately-aggressive behavior category. An individual can have quite an entertaining and distinctive personality. We had one that used to like to swim backwards at the surface of the water and spit or shoot water at you to get your attention, and because the fish was such a pig when it came to eating, we fondly named it “Piglet”.
A natural fright and noctural trait of this fish is for its body to take on a dirty or blotchy looking appearance.
13.) Triggerfish (Pseudobalistes flavimarginatus)
Triggerfishes are about 40 species of often brightly colored fishes of the family Balistidae. Often marked by lines and spots, they inhabit tropical and subtropical oceans throughout the world, with the greatest species richness in the Indo-Pacific. Most are found in relatively shallow, coastal habitats, especially at coral reefs, but a few, such as the aptly named oceanic triggerfish (Canthidermis maculata), are pelagic. While several species from this family are popular in the marine aquarium trade, they are often notoriously ill-tempered.
Triggerfish are attractive animals and some species have become too popular for their own good. They are sought for the aquarium trade, which has prompted fishermen to gather even threatened species from the wild. Researchers are working to raise triggerfish in captivity so that wild populations might more likely be left alone.
14.) Coral beauty (Centropyge bispinosa)
Very common on the Great Barrier Reef, the Coral Beauty Angelfish is also known as the Twospined or Dusky Angelfish. The body and head are a deep royal blue, highlighted with an iridescent orange to yellow. The Coral Beauty Angelfish is one of the easiest angels to care for.
It requires a 30 gallon or larger tank with lots of hiding places and live rock for grazing. Not a good reef dweller, the Coral Beauty Angelfish is prone to nip at stony and soft corals (sessile invertebrates).
The diet of the Coral Beauty Angelfish should consist of Spirulina, marine algae, high-quality angelfish preparations, mysis or frozen shrimp, and other quality meaty foods..
15.) Flame angelfish (Centropyge loricula)
The Flame angelfish is found in the Pacific Ocean, mainly in tropical environments between 28°N and 25°S. It inhabits clear lagoons and seaward reefs from the lower surge zone to a depth of 57 meters / 187 feet. It is a reclusive species that rarely ventures far from a suitable hiding spot. The Flame angelfish lives in harems consisting of 3-7 specimens.
Angelfish from the genus centropyge are all grazers in the wild. They constantly scan the rock for food items throughout the day, much like surgeonfish. They consume algae, tiny crustaceans and sometimes even detritus.