Queen Angelfish

Creature Feature – Queen Angelfish

This week on Creature Feature Friday we take a detailed look at the Queen Angelfish. 

Their royal title comes from their speckled, blue-ringed black spot on their head, which resembles a crown. Electric blue bodies and luscious yellow tails, this is a striking species, one of the most colourful of all reef fishes. Despite this bold colour scheme, their colouration actually helps them to blend in with the reef! 

Queen Angelfish


Scientific Name: Holacanthus ciliaris

Phylum: Chordata

Order: Perciformes

Family: Pomacanthidae

Genus: Holacanthus

© Pedro Lastra

Queen Angelfish Fact File

? Size: Individuals can measure up to 45cm long and weigh up to 1.6kg

? Distribution: This species is found in mature coral reef systems in the Western Atlantic Ocean from Bermuda to Brazil and the Caribbean

? Diet: Individuals eat a variety of foods on the coral reefs in which they are found. This includes sponges, algae, tunicates, anemones, coral, and loose fragments of organic matter

? Behaviour: A shy fish species, individuals are found alone or in pairs 

? IUCN Status: Least Concern. Despite populations estimated to be currently stable, human activity poses a threat to their long-term survival. They are highly prized in the aquarium trade and are affected by climate change, due to the destruction of their habitat (coral reefs)