Cirrhilabrus marjorie - Marjorie Wrasse
One of the Rarest of Wrasses
The Marjorie wrasse (Cirrhilabrus marjorie) is a very rare fairy wrasse collected in the Western Central Pacific Ocean near Fiji. First described in 2003 by Bruce Carlson, Gerry Allen, and Jack Randall, this species is named for Bruce’s wife. Like many fairy wrasses, the Marjorie wrasse is a deepwater wrasse, which, at least in part, is responsible to how infrequently it is seen in the hobby. Any wrasse lover should jump at the chance to own this fish whenever he or she sees it available, as very few make it into the hobby.
A Hardy, Colorful and Interesting Saltwater Aquarium Fish
This small (to 5.8 cm) reef-associated wrasse from the genus Cirrhilabrus shares many of the characteristics of other species in the genus. In general, it is hardy, colorful and displays interesting behavior, making it an ideal marine aquarium fish. The Marjorie wrasse is found in water between 20 and 50 meters deep, where it frequently lives in shoals reef rubble.
Similar to Other Wrasse Species
The Marjorie wrasse is similar to the deep-sea fairy wrasse (C. bathyphilus). According to Scott Michael, author of Wrasses and Parrotfishes (TFH 2009), the Marjorie’s wrasse may mix with the finspotted fairy wrasse (C. punctatus). As with many fairy wrasses, one male will be frequently be observed with a harem of females.
Marjorie Wrasse Husbandry
The Marjorie wrasse should be added to a peaceful community tank with plenty of live rock. While this species is frequently collected at depth, it can, like most deepwater fish, acclimate over time to a brightly lit reef tank. Expect the Marjorie wrasse to be shy at first, but, with the right environment and tankmates, this fish should become more outgoing over time.
There are no particular difficulties in keeping this particular species of fairy wrasse so long as it is placed with the right tankmates and fed an appropriate diet. The Marjorie wrasse is a zooplanktivore and does best when fed at least three times a day. It will readily accept most commercially prepared marine aquarium foods formulated for omnivores and carnivores. Supplement the Marjorie wrasses’ diet with small bits of raw table seafood for optimal health, and consider pre-soaking food in a vitamin supplement like Selcon. This wrasse, like other fairy wrasses, will also show interest in nori and other herbivore foods.