The variations of Pseudanthias ventralis may very well one day be described as separate species from the original Cook Islands type. The most commonly seen of these variants are the ones hailing from the Marshall Islands. Males from this area typically sport a red marking on the tail and this trait is shared with others from different geographical areas such as Japan and the Coral Sea.
We’re unsure as of now if these red tailed morphs from all over are the same, genetically. One thing we know for certain is that these variants are certainly distinct in appearance from the Cook Island ones. Wether they are genetically different enough to warren their description as a separate species or not, is uncertain as of now. Kevin of Pacific Island Aquatics has kindly shared with us some photos of P. ventralis from the Marshall Islands. More pictures below for your viewing pleasure.