Scrubber Fish Species in The Fabulae Anthology | World Anvil
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Scrubber Fish

Cleaning Service

Written by Endrise

Cleaning yourself with water isn't exactly something we can do.
— Merfolk

Scrubber Fish are a group of fish that evolved alongside aquatic races. Known for their large filters that help them feed, they act as a cleaning tool for many underwater cultures.

Basic Information


Most Scrubber Fish are roughly around the size of one's forearm with grey and blue scales. Their mouths have oversized filters that resemble a painter's brush moustache, used for scrubbing food of things. These are used for both feeding and as sensory organs.

Ecology and Habitats

Scrubber Fish live in saltwater seas not far form the surface. They survive the best in moderate temperatures above or below the equator, spending their times near the ocean floors.

Due to their reliance on other sealife, most live near coral reefs and other larger aquatic creatures. Places with lots of tissue to feed off, whether it be from living or dead things.

Dietary Needs and Habits

Most are bottom feeders that rub their filters over things to feed off any organic material it can catch. Diet consisting of dead skin, parasites and other tissue they can scrape off things.

Many also feed off the scales of larger sea creatures. As such, they often form symbiotic relationships with them to help clean their bodies for a meal.

Additional Information


Most got domesticated by aquatic races over several centuries ago. Through selective breeding, their filters got larger and better at scrubbing. For as far people are aware, Scrubber Fish are now dependant for their survival on aquatic cultures.

Uses, Products & Exploitation

Since it is difficult to wash with regular water, many aquatic races rely on Scrubber Fish to clean. Settlements often have cleaning chambers where such species live. To do so, communal artificial reefs get built where such fish can live.

People can then sit back and let them pick them clean as they swarm their bodies. By letting them rub up against scales and skin, they clean their bodies and get fed alongside it. The feeling is similar to a rough brush, if not ticklish for some prone to it.

Geographic Origin and Distribution

Scrubber Fish are native to the western sides of the Crescent Sea. Most are found amongst reefs near Sichelan and Inselreich, closer to their shores.

7 years
Average Weight
up to 16 kg
Average Length
58 cm
Body Tint, Colouring and Marking
Grey, blue, with black filters
Geographic Distribution

Cover image: Species - Aquatic Cover by Endrise


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Jul 3, 2021 12:58

Nice article with a fun opening quote ^^ It is not too long and has an easy to read layout. I found a small mistake here though 'dead issue', you seem to be missing a 't' here :) other than that great work!

Feel free to check my new world Terra Occidentalis if you want to see what I am up to!
Jul 4, 2021 15:37

Hehehe, such a fun idea! I have to say I never stopped to think about mermaid hygene, but this makes sense.
Do you think you'll make art for these little guys? I'd love to see them :P

Jul 4, 2021 17:03

Maybe some day, never been that great for drawing fishes. But I see what I can do!