Juvenile lemonpeel angelfish lose their black spot fairly early in their life, so getting of that size with the spot is not easy. Throw in the odds of finding a cocos-island blue eyed lemonpeel of similar stature, and we’re infringing on difficult, with a hint of improbable. The Indian Ocean lemonpeels from that area differ from the normal run of the mill lemonpeels by having a blue iris instead of a blue eye ring. They don’t come in often and when they do, they’re often in small numbers.
These lemonpeels are very rare in the states, but more common in the Asian markets. They are collected alongside Centropyge joculator and are shipped together, and they usually come in around 2-3 inches in length – like this one. Occasionally, larger sized specimens may appear, but tiny juveniles with the spot such as this one is nearly non-existant. So far only a handful of juvenile cocos-keeling lemonpeels have made their way to Japan. Juveniles however look very much duller in comparison to their adult counterparts, and only develop the deep blue eyes and the black gill cover later on in life.
The selling point for this incredible fish lies in the eyes, which separates it from the common standard fare of Pacific Ocean ones. Watching it grow into a blue eyed beast like the one below is rewarding, if you can procure a tiny one. Easier said than done!