Apart from FOWLR dominated set ups and the typical over-stocked fish tanks that have fast become a stereotype there, the reefing scene of Hong Kong is well known for another aspect of the hobby – the ability to procure rare fish. Much like Japan, HK has proven worthy to join the leagues by obtaining some ultra gems such as the juvenile Tigerpyge as well as the purple Purple Tang and the White-Bar Asfur Angelfish.
These latest demi-gods of butterflyfish to be imported by SeaLife, HK are the talk of the town this year. As seen by the picture above, these two butterflyfishes are robust palmed sized individuals. Although the idea of holding fish out of water for photography may sometimes be frowned upon, at least these guys remained submerged throughout the photo taking.
You may remember the Roa excelsa story couple of years ago of how a pair was procured but eventually, things took a turn for the worse and one died due to decompression issues. Being extremely deepwater denizens found up to 400ft, the collection process would certainly prove to be exceptionally difficult, even for the most advanced of fish collectors.
Ship it halfway round the world and you’re looking at a very stressed fish with a below average chance of survival. But, with care and dedication, it is not impossible to properly acclimate this deity of a fish into a regular aquarium lifestyle, as seen in this video of a feeding specimen by BlueHarbor. The other butterflyfish to join this impressive duo is the much talked about lately, Prognathodes basabei.
Even though we’ve seen large adults to ultra small juveniles in the past year or two, this is still an extremely rare catch by all means. The rarity, perhaps, diluted when compared right next to possibly the rarest and deepest species of butterflyfish that has ever graced the aquarium scene so far.