Top 10 most expensive aquarium fishes in the world 2021 ▷

The market for pet fish is not only a crazy one but also quite an expensive one. While most of the world’s population know fish only as a source of food, to others, it is a status symbol worth paying for hundreds of thousands of dollars. A good number of the most expensive aquarium fishes in the world are endangered species rare to find, explaining why they cost a fortune.

Photo: (modified by author)
Source: UGC

Fish enthusiasts determine the value of a fish-based on numerous factors. Some look at its beauty, colouring, patterns, rarity, and availability. Naturally, a commonly available fish and easier to breed would be much cheaper than a rare and unique species.

10 most expensive aquarium fishes in the world

Very few people have the most expensive fishes in their aquariums. This is because they are not only costly but also rare to find. The following are the 10 costliest fish you can own:

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1. Platinum arowana – $400,000

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Platinum arowana. Photo: @global_arowana
Source: Instagram

The silver-white platinum Arowana is a true beauty and deserving of the $400,000 price tag. Its size is about 4 feet 9 inches. Its lifespan of about 10-15 years makes it a worthy investment.

Its patterns glitter earning it the name dragonfish. What is more fascinating about the fish is the ability to jump like monkeys. The platinum Arowana’s teeth are rooted upwards, which is a distinction from other fish.

2. Freshwater polka dot stingray – $100,000

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Freshwater polka dot stingray. Photo: @twins_aquatic
Source: Instagram

Freshwater polka dot stingray is a black and white dotted fish making its appearance somewhat mysterious. The smooth oval-shaped fish has a unique ability to see things not only where the normal eye area covers but also those situated above the area.

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The freshwater polka dot stingray has electroreceptor Lorenzini that senses the presence of other living organisms nearby. The fish hides in the sand during the daytime and searches for food at night. It originated from Brazil but exporting it is now illegal because they are among the world’s rarest fish.

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3. Peppermint angelfish – $30,000

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Peppermint angelfish. Photo:
Source: Instagram

Peppermint angelfish is a small fish with about 3 inches, but it costs $30,000. They have a beautiful body of orange-red alternating with white stripes. It borrows its name from peppermint sweets due to their colour, making them the coolest fish to own.

Peppermint Angelfish is shy; it can easily stay with other fish species without a problem. It prefers to hide in sand or a shaded place away from the glare of humans. It can be found in Rarotonga and Cook Island of the Pacific. A piece of this fish species is currently under public display in Hawaii at the Waikiki aquarium.

4. Masked angelfish – $20,000

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Masked angelfish. Photo: @venusaquatics
Source: Instagram

To find this fish, one has to go into the deep sea about 23m to 174m on the Hawaiian Island. It boasts a white catkin-like body with what looks like a black mask on the mouth. Most of its tail is also black. The aesthetic of the patterns on its body is mind-blowing.

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Due to its scarcity, the fish has been commercially banned. Its lifespan is believed to be around 10 to 15 years. To accommodate the 8-inch fish, one needs an aquarium that can hold 125 gallons of water or more.

5. Bladefin basslet – $10,000

most expensive aquarium fishes
Bladenfin basslet. Photo: @exoticfishmeter
Source: Instagram

Bladefin basslet name originates from its dorsal fin, which looks like a blade. It is usually found in deep water 500 feet below the surface. This makes it rare and expensive.

Due to its size and location, the bladefin basslet is challenging to hunt. Its aquarium must have a minimum of 50 gallons of water for the fish to survive. Its lifespan is estimated to be around five to eight years.

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6. Golden basslet – $8,000

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Golden basslet. Photo: @ssv_aquatics
Source: Instagram

Golden basslet is a sparkling golden fish that is deserving of its name. Finding it is not an easy task because of its tiny size. Although tiny, 50 gallons of water are needed for its survival.

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7. Neptune grouper – $6,000

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Neptune grouper. Photo: @gondrongbettafish19
Source: Instagram

This winsome fish has its natural habitat between 260 to 800 feet under the sea surface. Although it has a lifespan of more than 30 years, a baby Neptune grouper is more expensive than an older one due to their demand. The smaller ones can easily adapt to the tank life for which they are being bought.

This fish species can generally be found at food markets, but this is not to suggest that it is easy to find. Its outstanding appearance is a mix of yellow base and purple stripes.

8. Australian flathead perch – $5,000

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Australian flathead perch. Photo: @exoquatic
Source: Instagram

The Australian flathead perch fish is as unique and rare as they come. Its looks more of a product of an artist’s imagination than a real fish. It has blue stripes with a little hint of black on an orange surface. It is not as famous as the other basslet series because it is among the rarest freshwater aquarium fish.

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Their lifespan is between 15-20 years, and as can be expected, the juveniles cost more than older ones. What sets this fish apart from others is that it has a feather, thus increasing its charm. To own this 6-inch fish, you must be willing to part with around $5,000.

9. Red and white koi carp – $3,000

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Red and white koi carp. Photo: @ssv_aquatics
Source: Instagram

The red and white koi carp is a beautiful 36-inch fish that can live up to 20 years. As the name suggests, it has a white body with red markings on its back, but the colours can vary from red to orange and even gold. When mature, it can weigh up to 12kg, so your aquarium must hold about 250 gallons of water for you to keep the fish.

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10. Wrought iron butterflyfish – $2,700

Most expensive aquarium fishes
Wrought iron butterflyfish. Photo: @breedfarm
Source: Instagram

It is not easy to have this fish in an aquarium because it eats planktons, making it difficult for them to adapt to tank life. Its market value is set at $2,700. It is black and grey. Its appearance mimics that of metallic armour, especially due to its dark colour.

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The fish species are united and are usually found in a pack of not less than 10. They are relatively small, growing to a maximum of about 5.9 inches. Their lifespan is about 7-10 years.

Fish is a traditional pet that was kept in whatever little transparent bowl the owner could find. However, some people have gone the extra mile to establish aquariums for fishes to impress their guests. This culture has impacted the prices of pet fish, as can be established from the list of the top 10 most expensive aquarium fishes in the world. Here, you can find fish whose aesthetics have been boosted by plastic surgeries, tail alterations, chin jobs and eye lifts. shared a list of the top 5 most expensive fishing rods in the world. A fishing rod is considered cheap by ordinary folk, but individuals who know what they are looking for in a fishing rod can tell a different tale. It is not just a stick used to catch fish. On the contrary, a fishing rod can be a source of pride, and some good tales told over generations.

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The most expensive fishing rods in the world are handcrafted, luxurious, and stylish. The more the additional features on a fishing rod, the more expensive it is expected to be. Individuals who want the best fishing gear know they have to part with large sums of money.

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