As angelfish go, the good ole regal angelfish, Pygoplites diacanthus, doesn’t come in too many variations; you get the grey chested Pacific Form and the yellow chested Indian Ocean and Red Sea form. Occasionally we come across a slightly scribbled regal angelfish and even more seldomly, a stunning all yellow and white “xanthic” regal angelfish such as this one is collected.
While pictures of xanthic regal angelfish do exist, we believe this may be the first time that a gold and yellow Pygoplites has been filmed, and you can see the stunning appearance of this unusual creature. Xanthic regal angelfish are usually only collected in the Indian Ocean, often from the Maldives, which seems to perhaps be a genetic “relation” to the fishes’ already golden yellow face and chest.
Alas, many if not most of these golden regal angelfish are reported to change back to more normal coloration and we have no confirmed reports of an individual retaining the unusual color scheme. Although the regal angelfish is quite different from the Coral Beauty, perhaps this will be one specimen to retain all or some of its all-golden coloration like Jimmy Ma’s Koi Coral Beauty. Thanks to Jyunichi Yamasaki of Marine Gift for sharing this beautiful fish with us.