The holidays are in full swing and besides being a legal excuse to put on weight, it’s also a time to indulge in a little something extra. All in the spirit of holiday cheer, of course. The fish deities know that as well, and this year, Santa delivered not one, but six of these incredibly rare Bodianus opercularis. Iwarna Aquafarm of Singapore secured these deepwater “barbershop poles” from the Indian Ocean for those who have been extra good this year.
B. opercularis is the sister species its the Pacific counterpart B. neopercularis. Coming from the deep waters of the Indian Ocean, this species is seldom encountered in the trade. We’ve wrote about it before in the past, but never in such quantities. The timely arrival of this species during such a festive season couldn’t be better. Adorned with striations of white and red, the common names of peppermint or candy cane hogfish is nothing but apt. Although rare and expensive, these are anything but delicate.
Bodianus are famed for being bullet proof and hardy, and B. opercularis is nothing less. Below are two pictures of the nearly identical B. neoparcularis that Aquarise of Japan secured last month. As mentioned before, these two species are probably sympatric and are nearly indiscernible, although B. opercularis appears to be of a deeper red coloration, and has a thinner red stripe on its anal fin. Irregardless, both are just as gorgeous and worthy of any rare fish collection this year.
- Nearly identical in appearance, Bodianus neopercularis from the Pacific is just as legendary and beautiful.
Still looking for something festive to spruce up your
tree tank this year? If boisterous hogfish isn’t quite your thing, then perhaps the diminutive Plectranthias pelicieri is more your cup of tea. Donned in the same candy cane coloration, this fish is the epitome of chill and is a perfect addition for a nano aquarium. Like many other in the genus, P. pelicieri stays smallish and is very peaceful, preferring to spend most of its time perching on rocks and watching the world go by. An easy fish to feed, it snaps up frozen food readily.
If owning such a fish is beyond budget, then we hope these pictures satisfy for now. Maybe a gingerbread cookie with red and white frosting in the likeness of these fish perhaps?