Pseudanthias calloura is a fantastic species made known to aquarists only in the recent years. Also known as the Aurora anthias, the gorgeous serranid is a colorful mix of cadmium orange and lavender. P. calloura is a central pacific species that is well documented down in “Earlei land”, also known as Palau. Although not commonly encountered in the trade, specimens have been imported before and most end up in the Japanese market.
B-Box Aquarium and Vessel are few of the LFS that can proudly add this species to their repertoire of rare fish imported in the recent years. While almost all pictures and information available describes the deepwater fish being found only in Palau, it is with great surprise that we happen to chance upon a photograph of this species being documented in the Celebes Sea.
What’s interesting is that the picture above was noted to be taken in the March of 1998 at a depth of 65ft in the Celebes Sea, a whole three years before P. calloura was officially described, and two years after its first reported documentation. P. calloura was first documented around 1996 in Palau and three specimens were collected later that year in, and the fish was officially described by Ida and Sakaue in 2001.
We’ve not seen or heard any coming out of the Celebes Sea since then but if the pictures and notes are true, they should still be living somewhere down there. Below are two pictures from B-Box Aquarium of the illustrious Aurora anthias brought in a few years back. We’ve not been seeing much of these recently, but when they decide to show up, you know as well as I do how fast they’ll be snapped up.