We already know that there’s loads of new fish in the mesophotic zone of the ocean so it’s always exciting when new fish are discovered down there. It’s especially tantalizing when new fish are discovered in a national marine park, like Papahanaumokuakea which was set up particularly as a natural laboratory to study coral reefs.
Deep diving trailblazers Rich Pyle and Brian Greene are at it again, with a fresh haul of new species of fish from depths of Kure Atoll which are normally out of range for recreational SCUBA. This time the deep diving team brought up a never before seen species of Anthias and a new wrasse, both of which are very attractive and related to other deep living species of reef fish.
The wrasse appears to be an unknown species of Suezichthys with delicate purple lines along the body, and a series of purple spots at the base of the dorsal fin. The new Anthias seems to be a new species of Tosanoides, a small genus of deep living marine fish which currently only has two described species, both of which are incredibly beautiful as adults.
It’ll probably a long while until we learn the true identity of these two new fish, whether they are described as new species or specimens of obscure reef fish that we don’t know much about. Either way, it’s great to see that new fish are being discovered in well traveled and studied places like Hawaii, makes you wonder what could be found in the deep mesophotic reefs of even more exotic places. [Bishop Museum]