Yellow Edged Lyretail – “Lyretail Yellowfin”

Yellow edged lyretail

Last updated on July 21st, 2022 at 04:05 am

A Yellow edged Lyretail is one of the most sought-after species in the Yellowtail family. They are usually found during the winter months but can be caught year-round depending on location and seasonality. This fish ranges from 2 to 20 pounds with an average size being around 5-8 pounds seabass. Yellow edged lyretails have a yellow line that runs along their dorsal fin towards their tail which gives them their namesake coloration.

The Yellow edged lyretail is a beautiful fish that you can find in the tropical waters of Indonesia and Australia. This article covers the basics about this species, including their habitat, diet, and reproduction. It also includes some tips on how to pick one up for your tank!

Origin and descriptions

Yellow edged lyretail

The yellow-edged lyretail is also known as the “yellowtail coris” due to its tail coloration. It was first discovered in Western Australia but can be found throughout Indonesia and Papua New Guinea (in addition to some other small surrounding islands).

The yellow-edged lyretail, or “yellowtail coris”, is a beautiful fish that belongs to the family of Yellowtails. It has an impressive appearance due to its body coloration and markings. The background color can vary from pale grayish-green with patches of bright blue around the fins and tail ending in large black spots.

The tail is yellow with a sharp black edge on the top and bottom of each lobe, but this can appear as more of an orange-ish color under bright lighting conditions. There are several variations in body markings that include some having only one prominent dark spot while others have two or three smaller spots between them (in addition to the large black spot).

As a juvenile fish, it has two black vertical stripes on the head. As it grows up, these change into a yellow edged lyretail with slightly orange-ish fins and blue body coloration that gets darker towards its tail end. The pectoral fin is pale gray near to white in color while the dorsal one is similar to the body coloration.

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Opposite to its appearance, this fish has a peaceful personality which makes it an ideal candidate for aquariums. It is not aggressive towards other tank mates and easily gets along with them as long as they are of similar size (which can be achieved by housing several specimens at once).

Species profile

Yellow edged lyretail

The Lyretails are a great-looking species, with yellow-edged fins and an overall blue body. They do well in singles or groups and will breed readily in the proper environment. There is some variation between the sexes; females tend to be more round than males (which may have longer tails), but both sexes can be equally aggressive towards other tankmates.

They will eat most foods and they enjoy brine shrimp, Mysis shrimp, krill, and small snails. They are not overly picky and they do well in a wide range of water parameters (euryhaline).

Scientific name

The scientific name of the yellow edged lyretail is Variola louti

Color and appearance

The yellow edged lyretail has a blue body and bright yellowfins. They are easy to tell apart from the similar but less aggressive orange finned lyretails (Variola chrysonotus). The males of both species develop long tails when they get older, however only on Variola louti do these become black in color. The females of both species are rounder, but Variola louti grow to be more colorful than the female orange finned lyretails.

Range and habitat

The yellow edged lyretail is found throughout the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It generally lives in warmer waters, but it has been known to live as far north as Norway (although this species isn’t native there). They can also be found on coral reefs or among the seaweed.

They are euryhaline fish, which means they can adapt to a wide range of water parameters. They are generally peaceful fish, but they may eat smaller crustaceans and invertebrates if their natural food sources are scarce.

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They can be kept in reef tanks or non-reef aquariums (although the tank should be at least 30 gallons). Like all lyretails, this species is aggressive towards other bottom-dwelling fish.


The maximum size of this species is only about six inches, but they generally grow to be between three and five inches.

Tank size

The yellow edged lyretail can be kept in tanks of 30 gallons or more.

Life cycle and mating

The yellow edged lyretail is an egg-scatterer and does not exhibit parental care. They can be bred in the home aquarium, but their offspring may eat small crustaceans and invertebrates (like shrimp) if their natural food sources are scarce. The larvae of this species will also need brine shrimp to survive.

Are they aggressive or peaceful?

This species is fairly peaceful, but they are aggressive towards other bottom-dwelling fish.

Yellow edged lyretail care

Yellow edged lyretail

The yellow edged lyretail requires a lot of swimming space and will do poorly in a tank that is too small. They can be housed with other aggressive fish, but they should not be kept with invertebrates or crustaceans.

Yellow edged lyretail diet

The yellow edged lyretail is carnivorous and will need to be fed a variety of meaty foods, including frozen krill or Mysis shrimp.

They should also be offered plant matter in their diets as well to help with digestion.

Tank mates

The yellow edged lyretail is aggressive fish that will require a large tank if housed with other fish. They should be kept alone or with very docile species, as they can quickly injure more passive fish.

Anemones and crustaceans (such as shrimp) should not be placed in the same aquarium as this species of damselfish, as they will eat them.

Water conditions

The yellow edged lyretail is a saltwater species and will need to be kept in water that is between a pH of eight and one. They should also have a specific gravity that hovers around the one point, though they can adjust their own internal biology if needed.

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They require clean, filtered water for optimum health.

Their tank should be at least one hundred gallons in size and should have a tight-fitting lid to prevent them from jumping out.

They need high water flow, so the tank should be equipped with multiple powerheads or other filtration that can create strong currents in their habitat.

The temperature of the aquariums needs to stay around 25°C (77°F).


Yellow edged lyretail

The yellow edged lyretail is relatively easy to breed, and they will usually do it on their own without any need for intervention.

Their mating rituals include the male fish defending a specific territory that contains some type of hard surface (such as rock) onto which the female can lay her eggs. Once fertilized by the male, the female damselfish collects the eggs before brooding them in her mouth.

Once they hatch, the fry is left to fend for themselves and will grow rather quickly if provided with a good diet and proper water conditions.

The yellow edged lyretail is generally considered reef safe; however, it can be more aggressive during mating periods or when its territory is threatened. It is best to keep it with other large, docile species.


The yellow edged lyretail has a lifespan of around ten years when properly cared for.

Parasites and diseases

The yellow edged lyretail is susceptible to ich and other external parasites if their water conditions aren’t kept up.

They can also contract septicemia, which is a bacterial disease that affects the blood system; this often occurs in fish whose immune systems have been compromised due to stress or malnutrition.


The yellow edged lyretail is prey to larger predators, such as moray eels and large angelfish.

Does it make good pets?

The yellow edged lyretail is not a good pet for beginner aquarists due to its specific care requirements.

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It requires at least one hundred gallons of water and can be difficult to feed, as it will eat many types of invertebrates found in the home aquarium.

If you’ve had experience with saltwater fish before or are planning on setting up a large tank, you can consider this species of damselfish.


The yellow edged lyretail is one of the most difficult damselfish to care for, but it can make an interesting addition to a large aquarium with other docile species.