Yellow-tailed Anthias, Pseudanthias flavicauda Randall & Pyle 2001

Other Names: Yellow Tailed Anthias, Yellowtail Anthias

A male Yellow-tailed Anthias, Pseudanthias flavicauda, in Fiji. Source: John E. Randall / FishBase. License: CC By Attribution-NonCommercial


Males are magenta with a large yellow area on the back, a pink head overlain with yellow above, a pink-edged yellow band from the eye to the pectoral-fin base, and mostly yellow fins, except for the anal fin which is lavender with a yellow band. Both sexes have a bright yellow caudal fin. Females are orange-pink above with dusky yellow scale centres, pink below, with a yellow head, and pale yellow fins.
This rare deepwater species is known from Holmes Reef in the Coral Sea.
Video of Pseudanthias flavicauda (and Liopropoma tonstrinum) on a deep reef in Tahiti.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2022, Pseudanthias flavicauda in Fishes of Australia, accessed 03 Mar 2024,

Yellow-tailed Anthias, Pseudanthias flavicauda Randall & Pyle 2001

More Info


Holmes Reef in the Coral Sea. Elsewhere the species is known from the western-central Pacific: New Caledonia, Fiji, Tonga, Vanuatu and Tahiti. Usually inhabits deep (mesophotic) reefs to depths of about 200 m. The Coral Sea individuals form small schools along near vertical walls at depths of about 60 m.


Dorsal fin X,16; Anal fin III,7; Pectoral fin 17-18; Lateral-line scales 45-49; Gill rakers 10-11 + 24- 26.
Body depth 3.1-3.3 in SL; head length 3.15-3.3 in SL; no papillae on posterior edge of orbit; upper lip of males slightly fleshy and finely papillate anteriorly, but not developed to a protuberance; vomerine teeth in a small, broadly triangular patch; third dorsal spine of males moderately elongate, 1.5-1.95 in head length; caudal fin deeply emarginate to 1unate, the caudal concavity 1.05-2.5 in head length.


Females: orange-pink, shading to pink ventrally, the scales dorsally on body with dusky yellow centres; head mainly yellow dorsally; dorsal, anal, and paired fins mainly translucent pale yellow; caudal fin bright yellow. 
Males: magenta with a large predominately yellow area on back between base of fourth dorsal spine and fourth or fifth dorsal soft rays; head pink, suffused with yellow dorsally, with a pink-edged yellow band from eye to pectoral-fin base; fins mainly yellow except anal which is lavender with a yellow band.


The specific name flavicauda is from the Latin flavus (= yellow) and cauda (= a tail), in reference to the yellow caudal fin of both sexes.

Species Citation

Pseudanthias flavicauda Randall & Pyle 2001, Raffles Bull. Zool. 49(1): 23, Figs. 5-8. Type locality: Fiji, Beqa (Mbengga) Island, ocean side, steep drop-off, 61 m. 


Bray, D.J. 2022


Atlas of Living Australia

Yellow-tailed Anthias, Pseudanthias flavicauda Randall & Pyle 2001


Fricke, R., Earle, J.L., Pyle, R.L. & Séret, B. 2011. Checklist of the Fishes, pp. 383-409 in Bouchet, P., Le Guyader, H. & Pascal, O. (eds). The Natural History of Santo. MNHN, Paris; IRD, Marseille; PNI, Paris. 572 pp. 

Fricke, R., Kulbicki, M. & Wantiez, L. 2011. Checklist of the fishes of New Caledonia, and their distribution in the Southwest Pacific Ocean (Pisces). Stuttgarter Beiträge zur Naturkunde A, Neue Serie 4: 341-463.

Gill, A.C., Tea, Y.-K. & Senou, H. 2017. Pseudanthias tequila, a new species of anthiadine serranid from the Ogasawara and Mariana Islands. Zootaxa 4341(1): 67-76

Myers, R.F. & Donaldson, T.J. 2003. The fishes of the Mariana Islands. Micronesica 35-36: 598-652.

Randall, J.E. 2005. Reef and shore fishes of the South Pacific. New Caledonia to Tahiti and the Pitcairn Islands. Honolulu : University of Hawaii Press 707 pp.

Randall, J.E. & Pyle, R.L. 2001. Four new serranid fishes of the anthiine genus Pseudanthias from the South Pacific. Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 49(1): 19-34 See ref online

Tea, Y.-K. 2013. Cairn’s Marine adds another feather to its cap with this stunning super male Pseudanthias flavicauda. Accessed 20 October 2017

Williams, J.T., Lawrence, A. & Myers, R. 2016. Pseudanthias flavicauda. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T69590820A69592532. Downloaded on 20 October 2017.

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37311227

Behaviour:Aquarium fish (very rare)


Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:30-200 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:6.6 cm SL

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CAAB distribution map