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Top 10 most expensive aquarium fish in the world

Scleropages formosus


  •  The most expensive fish, hunted by everyone from hobby enthusiasts to millionaire celebrities, can be astronomically expensive, befitting its beauty and rarity.

  •  Here are the top 10 most expensive aquarium fish in the world that collectors are willing to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for.

10. Iron-Forged Butterfly Fish (Chaetodon daedalma) — $2700

Chaetodon daedalma in the ranking of expensive fish

  •  This small fish (up to 15 cm long) lives in the Pacific Ocean and is most often found off the coast of Japan. It got its name due to the black metallic coloration, with bright yellow stripes on the dorsal and caudal fins.

  •  The iron-forged Butterflyfish usually move in pairs in their natural habitat. However, sometimes they form a school of hundreds of fish.

  •  Fish farmers and collectors can pay more than $2700 (164 rubles) if they want to get the "iron" butterfly fish in their collection. Such a high price is due to restrictions on the distribution of Chaetodon daedalma outside of Japan, as well as an increase in export costs due to its inclusion in the Red List of Threatened Species.

9 Australian Flathead Bass (Rainfordia opercularis) – $5000

Australian flathead bass

  •  Capturing the Australian flathead in the wild is not easy as it tends to disappear into caves before divers can spot it. And the small size makes escape even easier.

  •  Like the iron-forged Butterflyfish, the Australian Flathead Bass can grow up to 15 centimeters, making it a good choice for collectors with relatively small tanks.

8. Golden alligator pike, aka Mississippian shell (Atractosteus spatula) – $ 7000

Golden alligator pike

  •  Although this brightly colored predator generally prefers large rivers and lakes, it also tolerates sea water conditions well.

  •  As the name suggests, these fish are bright golden in color, with a long and smooth body that helps them glide through the water with ease.

  •  Potential alligator pike owners should make sure their aquarium is suitable for a fish that can grow up to 3 meters tall and weigh up to 130 kg.

  •  The value of golden alligator pikes is due to the rarity of their colors. Only one in 10 alligator pikes is golden.

7. Platinum Alligator Pike (Atractosteus spatula) – $7000

Platinum alligator pike

  •  Another expensive aquarium fish that is valued for its rare coloration. Because of its somewhat prehistoric appearance, the platinum alligator pike is often referred to as a "living fossil". And it is not surprising, because the ancestors of the Mississippian shell appeared in the Eocene, which began 56 million years ago and ended 33,9 million years ago.

  •  The muzzle of this fish is short, but wide, and the body is covered with white enamel-like scales in the form of rhombic hard plates.

  •  With proper care, a platinum alligator pike can live up to 50 years.

6. Neptune Sea Bass (Cephalopholis igarashiensis) – $7000

Sea bass Neptune

  •  A beautiful combination of orange and white stripes, accentuated by a plump body and spiny dorsal fin, makes the Neptune Grouper a stunning addition to any saltwater aquarium.

  •  Although owning one of these rare fish in the world will cost collectors at least $7000 (426 rubles), Neptune's groupers have difficulty adapting to the surface due to changes in water pressure.

  •  This is due to the fact that Neptune's sea bass usually lives at a depth of about 200 meters, so it is very difficult to bring them to the surface alive. Special decompression procedures are required.

  •  If you prefer to eat rather than own a Neptune perch, then in the food markets of Japan you can buy it for as little as $ 50 (3045 rubles).

5. Bladefin Basslet (Jeboehlkia gladifer) – $10000

Bladefin basslet in the top expensive fish

  •  This small creature is usually only 3 cm long, and its body is decorated with bright white and red markings. Its tiny size, combined with its preferred depth of 243 meters, makes the Basslet one of the most expensive aquarium fish in the world.

  •  The Bloodfin Basslet is a good-natured fish, so if you happen to have one, you don't have to worry about it eating other inhabitants of the aquarium.

4 Masked Angelfish (Genicanthus Personatus) – $30

masked angel fish

  •  Extremely rare deep sea fish, commonly found on coral reefs around the Hawaiian Islands, and protected from commercial fishing, they are usually bred in captivity.

  •  As protogynous hermaphrodites, masked angelfish begin life as females and eventually develop into males, with this transition involving subtle color changes around their eyes. Only females have a characteristic black mask. And males have black color only on the tail.

3 Mint Angelfish (Paracentropyge boylei) – $30

Mint Angelfish

  •  This fish is like a brightly colored toy, but its value is by no means a toy.

  •  Found in the South Pacific, the mint angelfish lives up to 120 meters deep in caves and reefs, feeding mainly on worms, sponges and other detritus.

  •  Only experienced divers can reach their habitat, and bringing the mint angelfish to the surface is a delicate process, as the fish must be decompressed so they can leave deep waters safely.

  •  In 2012, the Waikiki Aquarium purchased a mint angelfish for $30.

2. Leopoldi stingray (Potamotrygon leopoldi) – $100

Leopoldi stingray

  •  The freshwater pea ray, also known as Potamotrygon leopoldi, is an incredibly rare fish. It got its name in honor of King Leopold III of Belgium, who sponsored various studies of the Royal Institute of Natural Sciences.

  •  Hunting the leopoldi stingray in the wild can be extremely challenging as these beautiful creatures spend most of their time buried in the sand. However, collectors can also purchase captive-raised stingrays.

1. Platinum Asian Arowana (Scleropages formosus) – $450

The platinum Asian arowana is the most expensive fish in the world.

  •  The most expensive fish to breed in an aquarium by a significant margin is the platinum arowana, which costs up to $450 (000 million rubles).

  •  Its value is explained by its extremely rare color, and also by the fact that in some Asian cultures, arowana is a symbol of prosperity, strength and power. There is even a belief that this fish can save the owner from death, at the cost of his own life.

  •  The scales of this slender and graceful fish resemble those of a dragon, and have a metallic sheen when the arowana glides through the water.

  •  Arowanas are voracious, eating everything from other fish and crustaceans to frogs and crickets, and even jumping out of the aquarium for prey, earning them the nickname "monkey fish".

  •  As you might expect, the most expensive fish in the world is listed as an endangered species, and only a few aquariums can find captive platinum arowana.