Species encyclopedia

Regal Angelfish

Pygoplites diacanthus


The regal angelfish can be spotted both close to the surface above reefs and in deep lagoons and on the slopes of reefs up to 50 m in depth.

This territorial species tends to be solitary and only lives with a partner during the breeding season.

This fish from the angelfish family has a special diet, feeding primarily on sponges and sea squirts.

Although its juveniles are fearful and often confined to their territories, the adults are very active, travelling long distances through the reefs.


This species is a protogynous hermaphrodite, meaning each fish is born female and later transforms into a male. During the spawning period, they gather in couples according to the lunar cycle and release their reproductive cells close to the surface.

After the eggs hatch, the larvae lead a pelagic life (in the open water) for about 60 days and then actively return to the reefs looking for shelter.

It would appear that the regal angelfish in the Red Sea have brighter colours and are squatter than those in the Indo-Pacific.

Indo-Pacific area


Species encyclopedia

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