When we first shared about this unique hybrid four months ago, we provided pretty subpar pictures of the fish, disallowing us to showcase it’s truly unique appearance. The squiggly maze like markings that is inscribed in this fairly common hybrid of Centropyge eibli x vroliki is some of the most interesting patterns that this type of hybrid can possibly show. Such hybrids between eibli and vroliki are not sterile, and can breed with more hybrids, or back cross with each of the pure parent species to produce a whole collection of hybrid fishes with varying degrees of “hybrid-traits”, ranging from extremely subtle, to extremely bizzare. This particular specimen is likely to be the fruition of a hybrid to hybrid cross.
Such phenomena can also occur in the Centropyge flavissima x vroliki and Centropyge loriculus x ferrugata hybrids, where a whole spread of fishes with varying traits are observed both in the wild and in the trade. The pygmy kingi, as we’d like to call it, doesn’t really look identical to it’s more majestic and legendary comparison. However, the overall body coloration, the very gray head and the scrawled stripes and dash does draw some, albeit little, similarities. If only the stripes grew halfway down the body instead of hitting all the way to the ventral region.
The “dramatic” shot above of it turning it’s body is so “not Centropyge-ish”, and looks more like a bigger member of the Pomacanthidae group. But of course that might just be the power of suggestion speaking and pygmy kingi or not, this little striped beauty is here to stay, and is being paired up with a special little fish from the Indian Ocean. The pygmy kingi is currently kept together with the Cocos lemonpeel we posted about earlier, and will be re-introduced into the main tank once they have paired up. It shouldn’t be too difficult, since they are all closely related in the same complex. The makings of tigerpyge, except the future progeny of these two will be a tri-hybrid, containing genetic input from vroliki, eibli and flavissima. No one here has yet to breed any angelfish species successfully though, so the pairing is just simply for fun and for a unique effect. Since i’m nowhere near obtaining a tigerpyge financially, the next best thing would be to own the creators.