Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse


Fish Type: Reef SafeWrasse


Scientific Name: Cirrhilabrus johnsonii


Species: Labridae

Color: blue, orange, yellow
Aggressiveness: Non-Aggressive
Diet: Carnivore
Max Size: 3"
Minimum Tank Size: 55 gal
Relative Care: Easy
Photo Courtesy of Live Aquaria


The Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse, Cirrhilabrus johnsoni, is a gorgeous wrasse that was until recently a challenge for aquarists to obtain due to its scarce appearance in the aquarium industry. Though populous in its native habitat, the Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse is only found and known to exist in the Marshall Islands at the Kwajalein Atoll. Fortunately for aquarists, this species of Cirrhilabrus wrasse has become more available and remains highly sought after as one of the smaller members of its genus, maturing to an adult length of about 3”.

The adult male Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse displays vibrant orange and yellow body coloration with a lively pink coloration that accentuates its overall appearance. In addition, the male Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse sports bright orange/red fins with electric blue highlights. As with most species of wrasse, the female Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse is more subdued in appearance with less pronounced overall coloration and transparent fins.

Cirrhilabrus johnsoni is a reef dweller found at moderate depths from 60 to 90 feet. This striking wrasse can be found swimming among sparse rubble patches with mixed algae such as Halimeda, soft corals and rocky structures possessing coralline algae. As such, the ideal setup for the Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse is an established marine aquarium of at least 50 gallons aquascaped with a generous amount of live rock and plenty of open spaces to swim. Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse is considered reef safe and should be housed in aquariums with other peaceful tankmates. A covered aquarium is a must since all wrasses are known to be jumpers.

The Johnson’s Fairy Wrasse diet should include vitamin enriched frozen/thawed mysis shrimp, vitamin enriched frozen/thawed brine shrimp and other meaty foods along with a quality marine flake and pellet food.

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