Connie's Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus apterygia Allen 1983

Other Names: Mutant Wrasse, Rowley Shoals Wrasse

Connie's Wrasse, Conniella apterygia. Source: John E. Randall / FishBase via EOL. License: CC BY Attribution-Noncommercial

A very rare and unusual wrasse that lacks pelvic fins - a feature not found in other members of the family Labridae. Males have a long pointed tail, bright red and yellowish to white stripes along the sides, a red dorsal fin with yellow and blue outer stripes, and bluish anal and caudal fins.
This species was previously placed in the genus Conniella. Tea et al. (2021) showed that Connie's Wrasse belongs in the fairy wrasse genus Cirrhilabrus.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2022, Cirrhilabrus apterygia in Fishes of Australia, accessed 21 May 2022,

Connie's Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus apterygia Allen 1983

More Info


Endemic to north Western Australia, from SE of Rowley Shoals to Scott Reef, Western Australia. Occurs on steep outer reef slopes over rubble with patches of live coral in depths of 12-100+ m.


The specific name apterygia is from the Latin a- (= without) and pterygia (= fins), in reference to the lack of pelvic fins in the species. 

Species Citation

Conniella apterygia Allen 1983, Revue française d'Aquariologie 10(2): 43-46. Type locality: Rowley Shoals, outer reef slope east of Bedwell Island, Clerke Reef, Western Australia, about 17°16'S, 119°22'E, 32 m.


Bray, D.J. 2022


Atlas of Living Australia

Connie's Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus apterygia Allen 1983


Allen, G.R. 1983. A new genus and species of wrasse (Pisces: Labridae) from Rowley Shoals, Western Australia. Revue française d'Aquariologie 10(2): 43-46.

Kuiter, R.H. 2002. Fairy and rainbow wrasses and their relatives – a comprehensive guide to selected labrids. TMC Publishing, Chorleywood, UK.

Kuiter, R.H. 2010. Labridae fishes: wrasses. Seaford, Victoria, Australia : Aquatic Photographics 398 pp.

Russell, B. & Pollard, D. 2010. Conniella apterygia. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. . Downloaded on 19 March 2014.

Tea, Y-K., Xu, X., Joseph D DiBattista, J.D., Lo, N., Cowman, P.F. & Ho, S.Y.W. 2021. Phylogenomic analysis of concatenated ultraconserved elements reveals the recent evolutionary radiation of the fairy wrasses (Teleostei: Labridae: CirrhilabrusSystematic Biology: syab012,

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37384087


Conservation:IUCN Vulnerable

Depth:12-110+ m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:9 cm TL

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