Opistognathus hopkinsi is a beautiful, coldwater jawfish which has never before been photographed alive. If you thought that the blue spot jawfish, Opistognathus rosenblatti, was the bee’s knees of burrowing, mouthy fish then you haven’t been introduced to Hopkin’s jawfish. How would you like to keep a jawfish with a turquoise base coloration, yellow spangling and yellow eyes? This specimen of Opistognathus hopkinsi was photographed by Feel the Sea on a dive in Japan’s Izu Marine Park where the water was a fresh 14C or 57F. Sure the fish is cold water but technically so are blue spot jawfish.
This little guy was only about half grown at 2″/5cm and now we’re dying to know what this fish looks like as an adult. Although O. hopkinsi was first described in 1902, the species normally lives in much deeper water and as far as we know, these are the only pictures of a living specimen of this amazing jawfish species. Congratulations to Feel the Sea for being in the right place at the right time; who knows how many more long-described species have yet to reveal their glory to the fish lovers of our hobby.