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Lemonpeel Angelfish Species Facts & Information


Often a more difficult species to keep in aquariums.

Lemonpeel Angelfish (Centropyge flavissimus)

Image by Keoki and Yuko Stender

Guide Fish Care Rating:

3 Stars

Scientific Name: Centropyge flavissimus (Cuvier, 1831).


A Family Pomacanthidae member, the Lemonpeel is of the small sized Angelfish Centropyge genus referred to as Dwarf or Pygmy Angelfishes.
This Angelfish is often misidentified as the Herald's Angelfish (C. heraldi). However, C. flavissimus has a uniform chrome yellow body, a blue ring around the eye, and dark-blue edges on the vertical fins, while C. heraldi has a uniform chrome yellow body, often having a slightly orange tinge to it. Juvenile Lemonpeel specimens have a large black eyespot on the side of the body, which is often edged with blue.


Indo-Pacific region, but several of these fish have been reported to inhabit the reef near He'eia Pier in Kaneohe Bay on Oahu, Hawai'i. Not an endemic species to the Hawaiian Islands, Keoki Stender states on his Hawaiian Angelfishes page that the illegal release of unwanted aquarium pets into nearshore waters (INT's) is believed to be the case of why they are present.

Other Common Names: None known.

Average Size: To about 5 inches.


Provide plenty of shelter for hiding. Best kept in aquariums with ample algae and other live rock growth.

Minimum Tank Size Suggested: For a single specimen - 20 gallons; For a mated pair or trio - 55 gallons.

Characteristics & Compatibility:

It is possible to keep a male-female pair or even a trio (one male-two females) of Lemonpeel Angelfishes in the same tank together, provided that it is a large aquarium with plenty of hiding places, and they are introduced into the aquarium at the same time.

Reef Safe?:

This species is well known for picking at large-polyped stony corals, and tridacnid clam mantles. It may also eat some soft coral polyps, as well as pick at zoanthids. Therefore this fish, as true with most all Angelfishes, cannot be completely trusted if these invertebrates are present.

Diet & Feeding:

This is one Centropyge Angelfish that does not adapt as quickly to tank fed foods, making it a little more difficult to keep. It should only be introduced into an aquarium that is well established with ample live rock for grazing, or a good healthy population of macroalgae growth and diatoms to feed on. Providing this type of habitat stimulates the fish's natural eating habits, and with patience and coaxing it will usually begin accepting a variety of tank fed fares suitable for onimvores.
For more details on the overall characteristics, compatability, diet and feeding of this and other saltwater Angelfishes, refer to our Family Pomacanthidae Profile.

Guide Fish Care Rating:

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