Vi­bra­nium fairy wrasse

BBC Wildlife Magazine - - Wild News - Stu­art Black­man

WHAT IS IT? This colour­ful little fairy wrasse, its fins and scales streaked with iri­des­cent pinks, blues and pur­ples, gets its common name from the (fic­tional) rare and pre­cious metal that is wo­ven into the suit of the Marvel Comic su­per­hero Black Pan­ther.

WHERE IS IT? Cir­rhi­labrus wakanda was dis­cov­ered by scuba-div­ing sci­en­tists 50–80m down on un­der­ex­plored deep reefs off the is­land of Zanz­ibar in Tan­za­nia. Its sci­en­tific name cel­e­brates Black Pan­ther’s se­cre­tive African state, where vi­bra­nium is mined. Wakanda, write those be­hind the dis­cov­ery, “re­mained hid­den from the world for a long time.”

This new mul­ti­coloured fairy wrasse lives within dimly-lit coral reefs.

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