News / Species Spotlight / Popular Piscines: Coral Beauty Angels (10/21/15)

Popular Piscines: Coral Beauty Angels

In The Wild
Centropyge bispinosus are among the most widespread "dwarf" angels. With the exception of Atlantic waters, these can be found on about any tropical reef around the world. They will be seen at a great variety of depths (10' down to 200') and generally prefer areas with rich coral growth where they form harems of between 3 and 7 individuals.

They grow very slowly to a max size of just under 4 inches for dominant males. The vast majority of them show some variation of the standard coloration shown in the photo on the right, but some will be anywhere from nearly all yellow to all dark blue. A slightly less common color variant is seen below. There are even some reports of fairly major color changes in single individuals.

In The Aquarium

While most of us call this fish the "Coral Beauty" it is more commonly called the "Twospined Angelfish" by the scientific community. Regardless of what you call it, it is a brilliant aquarium fish. Coral Beauty Angels acclimate well and generally take a wide variety of foods very quickly, even segueing onto pelletized and flake foods in short order.

These are among the least aggressive of dwarf angelfish, making it a good candidate for hosting harems of fish. For those attempting this, be sure to add all the fish at once, and make sure that there is a distinct size difference between the one largest fish (male) and the rest of the smaller ones (females). Other fish added after the Coral Beauty that are a similar size or shape may be bullied. In aquariums where it is the "star" it can be housed in something as small as 30 gallons or so.

As with any dwarf angel, care should be taken when placing it in reef displays. While it is one of the better bets in the Centropyge genus for reef aquariums, it can still be a risk, especially with clams. The larger the aquarium, and the more often the fish is fed, the less likely you are to encounter this issue.

Gerald R Allen & Roger Steene & Mark Allen, Angelfishes & Butterflyfishes, 1st ed. (Odyssey Publishing 1998)
Scott W. Michael, Angelfishes & Butterflyfishes, 1st ed. (T.F.H. Publications 2004)
Rudie H Kuiter & Helmut Debelius, World Atlas of Marine Fishes, 1st ed. (IKAN-Unterwasserarchiv 2006)
QM Internal Sources: Adam Mangino, Eli Fleishauer