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They also likely eat algae from the reef surface. Because of the protection afforded them by their host anemones, common clownfish have few predators, but they are at risk of predation when they leave the anemone to feed. Like all clownfishes, this species changes sex throughout its lifetime.
Download PDF Clownfishes and Other Damselfishes (Aquarium Success)
Sex change is not particularly rare, but most species change from female to male. The clownfishes change from male to female. All individuals hatch as males and eventually join groups of a few individuals living together in an anemone. The largest individual of each group is the only female, and she and the largest male are the only two that reproduce.
The large, dominant female lays her eggs on the reef surface, and the male fertilizes them. Together, they guard the nest from egg predators until they hatch. If anything happens to the female, the reproductive male changes sex, becoming the dominant female. The next largest male then becomes reproductively active, and the other males in the group continue to be subordinate.
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The common clownfish is extremely popular in the aquarium trade. Some individuals are bright orange and white, while others are dark black and white. The stark colors and the relationship with anemones make this species highly desirable for public and private aquaria.
A majority of the damsels are however native to the Indian Ocean and the tropical parts of western Pacific Ocean. Damsels are not fuzzy eaters in captivity and they will normally accept a long row of different food.
It is important to remember that some species are herbivore, some feed chiefly on plankton, and some are omnivore. Research your particular species to find out its feeding requirements. Providing your damsels with a varied and well balanced diet will prevent the risk of poor health in the aquarium.
Mixing Clownfish and Damsel Fish?
Damsels are recommended for beginner marine aquarists, but it is important to keep min mind that damsels can be quite aggressive. Damsels are known to be territorial, especially if you keep older specimens, and they can attack other damsels as well as other fish in the aquarium. Some species will become extremely territorial as they grow older, while others are more docile. If you want a fairly non-aggressive damsel you can for instance get a group of Chromis viridis.
Always keep at least five specimens of this species together, preferably more. They may pick a little at the lowest ranking member of the group, but it will rarely result in injury. In the wild, Chromis viridis forms huge schools along coral reefs. Copyright www.