Aquarium & Tropical Fish Site

Paracentropyge venusta/venustus
Purple Masked Angelfish, Venustus Pygmy Angel

 Age of Aquariums > Saltwater Fish

Photos & Comments

Paracentropyge_venusta_1.jpg (10kb)
Photo Credit: Mike

Name: Paracentropyge venusta
Origin: Indo-Pacific Oceans

Size Behavior Reef
12 cm Loner Medium Risk


The Purple Masked Angelfish is a very rare fish to come by. Unfortunately, it's also very difficult to keep. It is not very sensitive to new water conditions but it is very difficult to keep. Mine very rarely ate food I offered. It was offered frozen brine shrimp, frozen mysis shrimp, formula one, formula two, spirulina formula, and dry nori. It ate formula one every so often, but what it loved most was the dry nori. It ate it whenever I put it in the tank. Other than that, it lived off the algae growing on the rocks. It is not 100% safe with coral and invertebrates. It never picked at my soft coral or mushrooms, but it did pick at my button and star polyps. Invertebrate wise, it picked at my Blue Linkia Starfish. It did, however, love to be cleaned by my Cleaner Shrimp. I had him for six months. Unfortunately, I went out of town for three days and had someone come to feed the fish and when I came home, it was not doing very well. It was having a buoyancy problem. The next day, it was dead. Even though this fish didn't live too long in my tank, it was always a joy to have. It was my favourite fish. It added a lot of color to the tank and also a lot of character. Also, it should be given plenty of places to hide and should be kept in dim lighting. If kept in strong lighting, it will rarely show itself. Before anybody considers buying this fish, I recommend you read as much as possible online and that you also buy the book Angelfishes and Butterflyfishes by Scott W. Michael. This book provides information on the majority (if not all) the angelfish and butterflyfish in the hobby.

Contributed by Mike

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