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Related FAQs: Fancy Basses, Subfamily Anthiinae, Anthiines 2Anthiine Identification, Anthiine Systems, Anthiine Selection, Anthiine Compatibility, Anthiine Behavior, Anthiine Feeding, Anthiine Disease, Anthiine Reproduction,

Related Articles: The Bass family, The Sunburst/Fathead Anthias, Red Sea Reef Slopes
Anthiine Species Accounts:
Pseudanthias bimaculatus; the Twin or Two-Spot Fancy Bass by Bob Fenner
Pseudanthias squamipinnis; the Lyretail Fancy Bass by Bob Fenner
The Sunburst or Fathead Anthias, Serranocirrhitus latus by Bob Fenner

/The Conscientious Marine Aquarist

Fancy Sea Basses, The Anthiinae

Part I To: Part II

 Bob Fenner

  Pseudanthias squamipinnis

Small, reef colonizing, colonial, often whimsically colored and exorbitantly priced, fancy sea basses, or commercially-called Anthias are the least hardy members of their parent family. Most are just unsuitable for the conditions provided by their captors. Follow along with me and I'll offer my suggestions for keeping these delicate fishes.

Classification: Taxonomy, Relation With Other Groups

Continuing in our discussion of true bass family members, Family Serranidae, we have the Subfamily Anthiinae. These small, at times breathtakingly beautiful little basses lack many Serranid specializations and may have a Pseudochromid (Dottyback family) affinity.

Common genera and sub-genera include popular Anthias, Pseudanthias, Mirolabrichthys (e.g. the purple queen, tuka), Callanthias, Franzia Nemanthias, Serranocirrhitus, among others (see Randall, Pyle). The systematics of this group is not well-elucidated and many new species are to be expected.

Survey of Nominal Species, Aquarium Notes:

Genus Anthias: Eleven Spp.

Anthias olivaceus Randall & McCosker 1982. Central Pacific. To about three inches. This image shot in Aitutaki, the Cook Islands.

Genus Holanthias; Deepwater Anthias: Nine Species:

Genus Luzonichthys; Slender Anthias: Six spp.

Luzonichthys waitei (Fowler 1931), the Magenta Slender Anthias. Western Pacific. To three inches in length. Should be housed in a large system in a small group. Appreciates live foods. No external sexual differences.

No pic

Genus Nemanthias; Threadfin Anthias: One species:

Nemanthias carberryi Smith 1954, the Threadfin Anthias. East Africa over to the Maldives. To four inches in length. Best kept in a large system in a haremic setting, one male, several females. 

Odontanthias borbonius (Valenciennes 1828), the Checked Swallowtail. To 15 cm. Indo-Pacific, South Africa to Palau, north to Japan, south to Indonesia. http://fishbase.org/summary/Species Summary.php?id=23333
Bigger PIX:
The images in this table are linked to large (desktop size) copies. Click on "framed" images to go to the larger size.
 

Genus Plectranthias; Perchlets: 

Plectranthias pelicieri Randall & Shimizu 1994. To 4.8 cm. Western Indian Ocean: Mauritius endemic. Aq. pic. http://fishbase.org/Summary/species Summary.php?ID=26714&genusname=
Plectranthias&speciesname=pelicieri

Plectranthias sp.  

Photo by Josh Evans

Genus Pseudanthias; Fairy Basslets or Anthias: Three subgenera (Franzia, Pseudanthias, Milabrichthys): Thirty-eight spp.:

Pseudanthias bartlettorum (Randall & Lubbock 1981), Bartlett's Anthias. Western Pacific. One of the hardiest Anthiines for aquarium use. To three and a half inches in length. Aquarium image of female, male.

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Pseudanthias bicolor (Randall 1979), the Bicolor Anthias. Indo-Pacific, Mauritius to the Hawaiian Islands. To five inches in length. Also a hardy large reef aquarium species. One male by itself or with several females. Aquarium and Hawai'i pix.
Verticals (Full/Cover Page Sizes Available
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Pseudanthias bimaculatus (Smith 1955), the Twin or Two-Spot Anthias. To four and a half inches in length. Distributed in the Indo-West Pacific, eastern Africa to Indonesia. This male and female at right in separate aquariums. A very shy species.

Pseudanthias cooperi, Silverstreak or Red-bar Anthias. Males with reddish to orangish heads, tail and dorsal fins; females reddish-brown. Both have grey stripe below the eyes. Males with reddish blotch when excited. To 14 cm. Indo-West Pacific. Here in Mauritius 2016.
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Pseudanthias dispar (Herre 1955), the Dispar Anthias. Indo-west Pacific. To almost four inches in length. Hard to keep if not immediately trained to take food. Best fed a few times daily.  Females have slightly longer pelvic fins. A gorgeous male in the Singapore Aquarium, Sentosa Island and N. Sulawesi males and females from the last.
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Pseudanthias evansi (Smith 1954), Evan's Anthias, Yellowback or Yellowtail Anthias. Indian Ocean, eastern Africa coast over to the Maldives. To five inches in length. A difficult aquarium species. Similar to the hardier Pseudanthias bartlettorum, which has a yellow dorsal fin. Below: Aquarium, Maldives and N. Sulawesi images of males.
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Pseudanthias fasciata (Kamohara 1954), One-stripe Anthias. To 21 cm. Indo-West Pacific; Southern Japan to Australia's GBR. Photo courtesy of John Boe and RMF. 
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Pseudanthias hawaiiensis, Randall 1979, the Hawaiian Longfin Anthias. Looks very similar to Pseudanthias ventralis but found only in Hawaii. Up to four inches in length. The male pictured on the left, and the female on the right. Images from the Kona side of the Big Island of Hawai'i. JasonC at right, BobF below.

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Verticals (Full/Cover Page Sizes Available
Pseudanthias hiva Randall & Pyle 2001. Males to 10 cm. females to six. Eastern-Central Pacific; Marquesas. Nuka Hiva pic of a female showing the definitive orange-red bar below the eighth dorsal fin ray. 
Pseudanthias huchtii (Bleeker 1857), the Red-Cheeked Fairy Basslet. To five inches in length. Indo-Australian distribution. A female off of Mabul, Malaysia and a male off of Gili Air, Lombok, Indonesia. A relatively hardy aquarium species, can be scrappy. http://fishbase.sinica.edu.tw/
Country/CountrySpeciesSummary.cfm?
Country= Indonesia&Genus=
Pseudanthias&Specie s=huchtii

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Pseudanthias hypselosoma Bleeker 1878, Stocky Anthias. Maldives to Australia, southern Japan. To 19 cm. in length according to Fishbase, though I've never seen one over four inches in the wild. Mabul, Malaysia and N. Sulawesi pix. 

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Pseudanthias ignitus Randall & Lubbock 1981, the Flame Anthias. Indian Ocean; Maldives, Similan Islands. To three inches in length. Not often (enough) seen in the west. Photo courtesy of Peter Martis

Pseudanthias lori (Lubbock & Randall 1976), Lori's Anthias. To five inches in length. Indo-Pacific. Best kept in a small group, as they are here at a marine livestock wholesale operation. Close up of an individual in Mabul, Malaysia and in a wholesaler's cubicle in L.A.
Pseudanthias luzonensis (Katayama & Masuda 1973), the Yellow-Lined Anthias. To five and a half inches long. Males with three yellow lines and red spot on their dorsal fin. Males off Gili Air, Lombok, Indonesia.

Part I To: Part II

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