Amphiprion pacificus, a new species of anemonefish (Pomacentridae) from Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, and Wallis Island

Gerald R. Allen, Joshua Drew and Douglas Fenner

aqua, International Journal of Ichthyology, pp. 129-138, Volume 16, Issue 3 – 15 July 2010


Amphiprion pacificus n. sp. is described on the basis of four specimens, 30.9-48.3 mm SL, from Wallis Island and Tonga in the western Pacific. Underwater photographs also reveal its presence on coral reefs of Fiji and Samoa. The new taxon is nearly identical in appearance to A. akallopisos from the Indian Ocean. Both species are generally pinkish brown, grading to orange or yellowish on the lower half of the head and side and possess a white stripe on the dorsal midline of the head extending from just anterior to the eye to the dorsal fin origin, continuing along the base of the dorsal fin to the caudal fin base. However, genetic results indicate that A. pacificus is more closely related to A. sandaracinos from Western Australia and the Indo-Malayan region, forming a moderately supported clade that is well differentiated from A. akallopisos. Aside from genetic differences A. sandaracinos differs from A. pacificus in having a uniform orange colouration and the white forehead stripe extends onto the upper lip. There also appears to be modal differences in the number of soft dorsal and anal rays (usually 19 vs. 18 and 13 vs. 12 respectively for A. pacificus and A. sandaracinos).

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