Introducing our March Fish of the Month, the Emperor Angelfish, Pomacanthus imperator!
Survey Regions: Emperor Angelfish are found throughout the tropical Pacific, including REEF's Central Indo-Pacific (CIP), South Pacific (SOP), and Indian Ocean & Red Sea (IORS) survey regions. Click here to see REEF database reports for this species in each region: CIP, SOP, IORS.
Size: Adults can reach up to 15 inches, and juveniles are typically 1-4 inches.
Identifying Features: Emperor Angelfish have bright blue and yellow stripes and a yellow tail, a dark mask covering their eyes, and a large blue-edged black bar behind their head. These are also extremely eye-catching as juveniles, with a pattern of blue, black and white concentric circles covering their body. Juveniles look so different from the adults that they were once thought to be a different species!
Fun Facts: Emperor Angelfish are solitary and are found in coral-rich areas. They have the ability to make a loud drumming sound when they are startled. Males are territorial and will defend their living space, and even attack other male Emperor Angelfish who enter their territory. If you like this fish, you can choose to be on the Emperor Angelfish Team when you sign up for the REEF Fish Out of Water Virtual 5K! Click here to learn more.
Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for our next Fish of the Month.
Photos by Florent Charpin