The Mccullochi clown fish, how did it come to be?

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The Mccullochi clown fish, how did it come to be?

Post  liquidg on 21st December 2015, 1:35 pm

There is a colony of the melanopus/tomatoe clown fish I found maybe 25 years back that got me thinking what they could be possibly said to be, "in transition", out near Hutchinson shoal reef, a community that is neither one, nor the other!

This is most likely due to the very cool thermoclines we experience around here taking from the colourful warmer wasters tomato clown fish to the daggy dull tomatoe clown that is in one section  of this reef.

Its a real dark grey/black fish with most of the usual tomatoe clown markings, but not really.
Mostly they sort of have the same colouration as the pictured melanopus mutations pictured that have been bred by marine fish breeders, but the huchies one is with some orange on their belies.

As hobbyist have found, there are opportunities for so many mutations of many clown fish species that they successfully keep alive that in the wild would not normally be able to breed with or even be tolerated by their own kind, so in nature the survival of these are rare, but in breeding tanks, this is becoming very common.
In the 80s and early 90s the tomato clown was always like this one and through out the barrier reefs warm waters, and in most of the worlds warmer waters, this is what they look like.
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Also the ephippium or fire clown most likely got mixed up to make the Vanuatu variation of the melanopus.
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Vanuatu melanopus.
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These pics show variations of what the melaopus looks like under varied conditions and two of the varied mutations that would have been, but many would not have been seen and died.
These dull in colouration clown fish are more like the ones at huchies as the east ausy current takes them as hatchlings even further south.
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At the most southern reaches of ocean temps around Norfolk island, where the east ausy current brings an immense amount life to as juvenile and larvae, that are not cold enough that clown fish can not survive, you have this one!
Now its quite clear where this guy may have come from.
The mccullochi.
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