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Commonly Asked Questions

Appears in Georgia Aquarium's:
  • Ocean Voyager

Range / Habitat

  • King angelfish occur in the tropical Eastern Pacific from the Sea of Cortez to Ecuador and Peru, including the Galapagos Islands.
  • Adults are found in clear water on rocky reefs and in coral areas at depths from about 13 to 98 feet (4 – 30 m).
  • Juveniles hide in reef crevices and seldom venture far from cover. They also may be encountered in tide pools.

Physical Characteristics

  • Adult king angelfish is a mottled dark blue-gray color with a white bar extending from the dorsal fin to the level of the pectoral fin, tapering at its lower end. The fan-shaped caudal fin is orange-yellow, as are the pectoral fins.  
  • Juvenile has a different color pattern than the adult, displaying a brown and orange body with narrow vertical blue bars on its sides and blue margins on the dorsal and anal fins. It also has a blue bar behind the eye.
  • Adults can reach about 14 inches (35.6 cm) in length.

Diet / Feeding

  • King angelfish feeds during the day on sessile invertebrates and algae, and most frequently preys on sponges. It also consumes plankton.

Reproduction / Growth

  • Reproduction takes place in late summer, with spawning occurring daily throughout the lunar cycle.
  • This species pair-bonds during spawning season and the female defends its territory aggressively.

Conservation Status

  • “Not Evaluated” on the IUCN Red List.

Additional Information

  • Occurs alone, in pairs (usually during breeding season) or in aggregations with other king angelfish or sometimes with Cortez angelfish (Pomacanthus zonipectus). 
  • Juvenile king angelfish exhibit cleaning behavior.
  • Also is called the “Passer angelfish."

A Guide to Angelfishes and Butterflyfishes. Allen, G.R.; Steene, R. and Allen, M., pg. 208.