Marine Research Application Puts the Reef Fish of the East Indies At Your Fingertips


Released today, the innovative ‘Reef Fishes Of The East Indies’ App brings every known reef fish species in the East Indies to the masses - increasing value for the regions’ vast biodiversity

Jakarta, Indonesia – Conservation International (CI) today announced the release of  the “Reef Fishes Of The East Indies” mobile app, a digital guide to every known reef fish species in the most biodiverse region on the planet, based on the book of the same name. 

Co-author, Mark Erdmann CI’s senior advisor to the Indonesian Marine Program said, “Sharing this knowledge brings greater value to the biodiversity present here and we hope this will increase motivation and momentum for its conservation to ensure that these species and their delicate ecosystems remain in balance. Maintaining this natural capital is key to the region’s important tourism industry, and other ecosystem services the ocean provides the people.” 

The comprehensive information contained in this guide, includes over 2,500 reef fishes of which 25 species are new to science. It summarizes 60 years of research and exploration and brings greater understanding and valuation of the immense biodiversity of reef fish in the East Indies. The authors, scientists Mark Erdmann and Gerry Allen, have spent much of their lives at sea discovering, studying and conserving some of the most rare and beautiful fish in the world. The proceeds of this CI produced app will support CI Indonesia’s marine conservation program.

Designed for iPad and Kindle Fire, "Reef Fishes of the East Indies" does not “stream” content, enabling users to be used out at sea, with no internet connection required for use. The app contains many useful and interactive features including search, note-taking and drawing features, detailed entries for each species, and photo-sharing by email and social media. It is available for purchase in the Apple store and Volumes One and Two are $17.99 USD each, and Volume 3​ is free.

“This is the perfect digital guide for divers and nature lovers to use in the office, school, home or out on the open sea,” Erdman said. “We had originally simply created a book, but later thought it would be great to produce an app to bring this information to the masses in an easy to access, transportable format.”

The coverage area of the app includes the Coral Triangle (including Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea, and the Solomon Islands) which alone boasts 37% of the world’s coral reef fish species - more than anywhere else on the planet, as well as the South China Sea (including Brunei Darussalam to Vietnam and Singapore), the Andaman Sea (including Thailand, Myanmar, and the Andaman Islands of India) and Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean. It covers all shallow-water (0-75m) reef-associated fish species known from the region, including both obligate reef dwellers and those that are commonly observed passing through reef areas or in the soft bottom areas just adjacent to reefs.

From the majestic manta ray (Manta birostris) to the gorgeous, jewel-like mandarinfish (Synchiropus splendidus), with 2,655 species in over 3,000 Retina Display/High Definition photos, the sheer quantity of content is split between three volumes for iPad that link together seamlessly, so you can move instantly between one volume and another. Organized by Classification, Family, and Species, the app will be regularly updated to keep up with the scientists’ new discoveries. And Erdmann and Allen are busy discovering new species with astonishing frequency. Their team most recently found a new species of “walking” Bamboo Shark (Hemiscyllium halmahera) in the waters off the Maluku Islands, Indonesia. 


Available content for media (***Please Provide Image Credits***)
Stunning photographs and App screenshots available for download at: 

To purchase: 

For more information, contact: 
Emmeline Johansen, Regional Communications Manager, Asia Pacific Field Division, Conservation International | Mobile +64 277 793 401 | Email   

Note to editors:
About Conservation International (CI) – Building upon a strong foundation of science, partnership and field demonstration, CI empowers societies to responsibly and sustainably care for nature, our global biodiversity, for the well-being of people. Founded in 1987, CI is headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area and employs more than 800 staff in 29 countries on six continents, and has nearly 1,000 partners around the world. For more information, please visit our website at: or visit us on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.