Marine angelfish are perciform fish of the family Pomacanthidae

Found on shallow reefs in the tropical Atlantic, Indian, and mostly western Pacific Ocean, the family contains seven genera and approximately 86 species. They should not be confused with the freshwater angelfish, tropical cichlids of the Amazon River basin.






With their vibrant colours and deep, laterally compressed bodies, marine angelfish are some of the more conspicuous residents of the reef. They most closely resemble the butterflyfish, a related family of similarly showy reef fish. Marine angelfish are distinguished from butterflyfish by the presence of strong preopercle spines (part of the gill covers) in the former. This feature also explains the family name Pomacanthidae; from the Greek poma meaning “cover” and akantha meaning “thorn”. Many species of marine angelfish have streamer-like extentions of the soft dorsal and anal fins. The fish have small mouths, relatively large pectoral fins and rounded to lunate tail fins.

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The largest species, the gray angelfish (Pomacanthus arcuatus) may reach a length of 60 centimetres; at the other extreme, members of the genus Centropyge do not exceed 15 centimetres. A length of 20-30 centimetres is average for the rest of the family. The smaller species are popular amongst aquarists, whereas the largest species are occasionally sought as a food fish; however, there have been reports of ciguatera poisoning as a result of eating marine angelfish.

Above Inages Come From The NOAA