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Rainbow Reef

Marvel at this kaleidoscope of dazzling, warm-water fish as they zip in and out of their Indo-Pacific-inspired coral reef.

What Will You Discover?

Spot thousands of intricately colored fish from the tropical islands of the Pacific Ocean. Joke with the clown triggerfish, find the blade on each side of the regal blue tang's tail, check out the venomous yellow spines of the foxface rabbitfish, and more as these rainbow-inspired beauties navigate a delicate reef.

Achilles Tang Achilles Tang

Achilles Tang

The achilles tang is a strikingly beautiful species typically found in shallow water with lots of surge where algae is plentiful.

Diet

Algae

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 10 inches

Range

South and central Pacific Ocean

Did You Know?

Though the name Achilles comes from the Greek mythical hero who was killed by a single arrow to the back of his heel, the red spot on the Achilles tang is far from defenseless, harboring a blade-like spine on both sides which can be extended when threatened.

Powderblue Tang Powderblue Tang

Powderblue Tang

The powderblue tang may be found individually or in large shoals, utilizing its beak-like mouth to scrape algae from the reef.

Diet

Algae

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 9 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Did You Know?

Although the powderblue tang can be found in large groups when food is plentiful, when food is scarce, they are ruthlessly aggressive toward their own species with encounters resulting in severe lacerations or even death.

Clown Tang Clown Tang

Clown Tang

The clown tang is a large and charismatic species in perpetual motion, constantly scouring reef crest surge zones for algae, sometimes in very shallow water.

Diet

Algae

Size

Up to 15 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Did You Know?

Mature clown tangs are fiercely territorial and defend the algae found in their territory from other grazing fish.

Convict Tang Convict Tang

Convict Tang

The convict tang is an active species that may be found in massive groups, hundreds strong in areas where algae are plentiful. Juveniles may be found alone or in small groups in shallow water.

Diet

Algae

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 10 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Did You Know?

The convict tang has a white or pale green body with six black vertical stripes, similar to the uniform of a prison inmate.

Blackspot Puffer Blackspot Puffer

Blackspot Puffer

The blackspot puffer is a comical species, contradictory in body shape to most fish, with a lack of pelvic fins, scales, or a lateral line. The pufferfish can inflate their bodies by swallowing air or water to deter predators. They use four large teeth and strong jaws to crunch up hard prey items.

Size

Up to 13 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Crustaceans, mollusks, sponges, algae, coral

Did You Know?

Sometimes called the dog-faced puffer for obvious reasons, this cute fish can actually pack quite a punch to potential predators; its skin contains a poison called tetrodotoxin which could be deadly if ingested, however tetrodotoxin is also being investigated as a possible treatment for cancer-associated pain in humans.

Clown Triggerfish Clown Triggerfish

Clown Triggerfish

The clown triggerfish is shockingly garish and more akin to something you would expect to see at a modern art gallery than on a coral reef. Like most triggerfish species, the clown triggerfish is very territorial; they will attack any intruder, even ones much larger than themselves. These fish have large teeth and strong jaws capable of crushing crustacean shells.

Size

Up to 20 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Crustaceans, mollusks, urchins

Did You Know?

This fish has a long dorsal spine they will use to lock themselves into rocks for protection at night. When the spine isn't extended, the fish all but disappears into a small holster called a dorsal furrow.

Blue and Gold Fusilier Blue and Gold Fusilier

Blue and Gold Fusilier

Often found in large groups, blue and gold fusiliers are gregarious planktivorous feeders, meaning they consume tiny organisms that drift in the water column. They also are active swimmers and spend most of their day foraging for plankton on the outer reef slope.

Diet

Zooplankton

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 14 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Did You Know?

Blue and gold fusiliers have a structured pattern of courtship with six distinct phases.

Bird Wrasse Bird Wrasse

Bird Wrasse

The bird wrasse is a conspicuous species on the reef with a long snout and flapping pectoral fins, making it hard to miss. Their prominent lips hide canine teeth used to pluck prey from the reef. Pharyngeal bones in the gill area help crush the shells of their prey. Bird wrasse are active predators by day, but at night, they shelter in reef crevices or bury themselves in sand patches.

Size

Up to 12 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Fish, crustaceans, mollusks

Did You Know?

Juvenile and female bird wrasse are white and gray in color with a reddish upper snout. Later in life, females undergo a sex change, becoming functional males and changing to solid blue-green in coloration. This change from female to male occurs in most species of wrasse.

Flame Angelfish Flame Angelfish

Flame Angelfish

Typically found in pairs or small groups of 3-7 fish called harems, flame angelfish spend most of their day on the outer reef slope, darting from rock to rock in search of algae and tiny crustaceans.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 6 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Algae, plankton, crustaceans

Did You Know?

Flame angelfish are among the most popular marine aquarium species due to their small size and stunning coloration.

Pakistani Butterflyfish Pakistani Butterflyfish

Pakistani Butterflyfish

The Pakistani butterflyfish can often be found in pairs, utilizing their pointed mouths to pluck coral polyps from the reef.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 7 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Coral polyps, worms, crustaceans

Did You Know?

Abundant butterflyfish are a good indicator of reef health, as they require large expanses of healthy coral to thrive.

Raccoon Butterflyfish Raccoon Butterflyfish

Raccoon Butterflyfish

Raccoon butterflyfish are more active at night, which gives them better access to one of their favorite snacks, coral polyps.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 8 inches

Diet

Algae, coral, zooplankton, nudibranchs

Range

Indo-Pacific region and southeast Atlantic Ocean off the South African coast

Did You Know?

Notice the black and white bands across the face of this fish, similar to the raccoon-mask face of their terrestrial namesake.

Blonde Naso Tang Blonde Naso Tang

Blonde Naso Tang

Blonde naso tang can be easily identified by their orange lips and bright yellow dorsal fins and are typically found patrolling the reef and nibbling on algae. They are distinguished from their almost identical relative to the east, the naso tang, by their dorsal fins, which are yellow instead of black.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 18 inches

Diet

Algae, zooplankton

Range

Western Indian Ocean and Red Sea

Did You Know?

Unlike many other tang species that have retractable spines at the base of their tail, naso tang tail spines are very large and fixed in an open position.

Naso Tang Naso Tang

Naso Tang

Juvenile naso tang tend to prefer the shallow reef environment, while larger adults often cruise the deeper reef slope, foraging for zooplankton in the strong currents.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 18 inches

Diet

Algae and zooplankton

Range

Western Pacific and east Indian Oceans

Did You Know?

This fish is sometimes called the lipstick tang due to their striking orange lips!

Vlamingii Tang Vlamingii Tang

Vlamingii Tang

The vlamingii tang is frequently found aggregating in schools, feeding on zooplankton around the shallower areas of deep slopes and drop-offs.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 24 inches

Diet

Algae, zooplankton

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Did You Know?

Using special skin cells called chromatophores, the vlamingii tang has the ability to quickly and dramatically change its color from pale to brilliant to dark, depending on mood or environment. When trying to impress a female or assert dominance, the male will flash with brilliant metallic blue lines and spots.

Flame Hawkfish Flame Hawkfish

Flame Hawkfish

The flame hawkfish can typically be found perched on the branches of dense branching corals. This gives the fish a hawkish good view as its name suggests, but also a quick escape into the coral branches if danger arises.

Diet

Crustaceans

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 3.5 inches

Range

Western Pacific Ocean

Did You Know?

Despite being poor swimmers due to the lack of a swim bladder, flame hawkfish use their hefty pectoral fins to maneuver themselves around.

Longnose Hawkfish Longnose Hawkfish

Longnose Hawkfish

These fish are usually found skirting around the branches of gorgonians and sea fans in areas of high flow on the outer reef slope as deep as 300 feet. These fish use their long, needle-like mouth to extract copepods and other small crustaceans from crevices in the reef.

Diet

Crustaceans

Size

Up to 5 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Did You Know?

Like all hawkfish species, the flame hawkfish lacks a swim bladder. Instead, they use their large pectoral fins to perch on rocks and corals, with an occasional darting burst to move from place to place.

Pacific Creolefish Pacific Creolefish

Pacific Creolefish

Pacific creolefish can be found in large groups hovering above the reef feeding on zooplankton during the day. At night this fish changes color and lays against the reef to avoid detection from nighttime predators.

Size

Up to 14 inches

Range

Eastern Pacific Ocean

Diet

Zooplankton, fish, crustaceans

Did You Know?

Pacific creolefish are broadcast spawners, meaning that they release their eggs and sperm into the water column where fertilization occurs.

Orbiculate Batfish Orbiculate Batfish

Orbiculate Batfish

Orbiculate batfish are typically found in shallow, protected coastal waters, including mangroves, coral reefs, and deeper areas with silt substrates. Juveniles will hide among mangroves and in protected lagoons, mimicking dead leaves floating in the water column. Adults may be found in large groups when food is plentiful.

Size

Up to 24 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Fish, algae, plankton, crustaceans

Did You Know?

Orbiculate batfish display a dramatic change in appearance as they grow. As fry, they are identical to a dead leaf, brown and spotted, drifting lifelessly to not attract attention from predators. As juveniles, they display a silvery body with three vertical black lines and a massive dorsal fin, as tall as they are long. As adults, they maintain their silver bodies and black stripes but grow into their huge fins, making their body shape almost circular.

Bluering Angelfish Bluering Angelfish

Bluering Angelfish

The bluering angelfish are typically found in pairs defending a territory around the size of a one-car garage. Juveniles stick close to the surface in dense coral cover, while adults may be found deeper down the reef slope.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 18 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Algae, sponge, tunicates, zooplankton

Did You Know?

Like many members of this genus, the bluering angelfish undergoes a complete color transformation from the juvenile to the adult stage.

Emperor Angelfish Emperor Angelfish

Emperor Angelfish

Perhaps the most recognizable marine angelfish, the emperor angelfish is an iconic species on the reefs of the Indo-Pacific region. These fish will aggressively defend their territories, especially against another male angelfish.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 16 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Algae, sponge, tunicates, zooplankton

Did You Know?

Adult emperor angelfish look so different from juvenile emperor angelfish they were thought to be an entirely different species until the 1930s.

Picasso Triggerfish Picasso Triggerfish

Picasso Triggerfish

During the day, Picasso triggerfish typically cruise subtidal reef flats and protected lagoons. At night, however, they wedge themselves in a coral or rock crevice and lock themselves in by extending their dorsal fin, which resembles the trigger of a gun.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 10 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Diet

Fish, worms, crustaceans, mollusks, urchins

Did You Know?

Research suggests Picasso triggerfish have trichromatic vision, similar to humans!

Foxface Rabbitfish Foxface Rabbitfish

Foxface Rabbitfish

Mature foxface rabbitfish are usually solitary animals, scouring the reef with their rasp-like teeth to scrape algae from rocks. When threatened, this fish can dramatically change color from its usual bright yellow to dark brown.

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 10 inches

Diet

Algae, zooplankton

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Did You Know?

Rabbitfish spines contain a venom similar to that of a stonefish.

Sailfin Tang Sailfin Tang

Sailfin Tang

The sailfin tang can be found alone but also in large groups in areas where algae is plentiful. A pointed mouth and rasp-like teeth allow the sailfin to forage in crevices where other fish can't quite reach.

Diet

Algae

Habitat

Coral reefs

Size

Up to 16 inches

Range

Indo-Pacific region

Did You Know?

Named for the spectacular sail-like dorsal and anal fins, the sailfin tang usually keeps its massive fins folded back unless threatened or otherwise excited.

What's Inside

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