The Tiger Angelfish is no stranger to the pages of Reef Builders, and now thanks to a recent import by Pacific Aqua Farms, the Tiger Angelfish is no longer a stranger to America. Despite its rarity and limited distribution in South Africa and more recently Madagascar, a few specimens seem to trickle onto the world stage but this is the first that we know of an Apolemichthys kingi arriving in the United States.
We were somewhat surprised when we first heard that Pacific Aqua Farms (PAF) had landed a tiger angelfish. We initially thought that perhaps the collectors in Madagascar had already succeeded in collecting and shipping out the coveted A. kingi, but we learned that this tiger angelfish is actually South African in origin.
It was our understanding that South Africa doesn’t allow for the export of live tropical fish – you can get all the hyenas, lions and zebras with the proper paperwork but no live fish. However Sylvia of PAF set the record straight, assuring us that the proper import & export agencies both in ZA and the U.S. cleared the shipment with no apparent issues.
So now that we have the first tiger angelfish in the United States, this princely reef fish is looking for a new luxurious home. As you can imagine, this being the first specimen of this highly coveted species in the aquarium trade makes this angelfish a rare prize indeed. Interested parties will need to have their retail supplier contact Pacific Aqua Farms with enough coin to buy a complete reef tank!
The first American tiger angelfish has been settling in captivity since last week, he’s about 5.5 inches long, and he’s nibbling at aquarium foods but not yet feeding with gusto. We wish this inaugural specimen of Apolemichthys kingi all the best of luck in captivity, and we hope to keep tabs on him through to his future aquarium home.