Common Name: Swallowtail seaperch
Scientific Names: Anthias anthias
Description: This small fish (to about 10cm in this area), resembles a Goldfish in shape and colour and has a large deeply forked, crescent-shaped tail fin. The fish are coloured a variable golden red, with yellow tips to the tall dorsal (back) fin which can be raised up like a flag. The pelvic fins are also relatively long and can have yellow tips.
Distinctive Features: The reddish body and the long, elegant tail and pelvic fins are highly distinctive.
Abundance: Loose shoals of hovering fish. Common at depths below 20m and in caves.
Habitat & Behaviour: Found in dark areas often adjacent to vertical or steep rock and in dim deeper water between 20-30m. A torch will be needed to highlight the colours.
Reaction to Snorkellers & Divers: Will mainly be seen by divers.
Other Names: Mediterranean fairy basslet and Marine goldfish.
Other Notes: The males are larger and more flamboyant than the females and there are fewer of them as they are produced by sex reversal from large females.
Text: Bob Earll
Photo: Russell & Gill Bennett
Video: Bob Earll