Nearly Naked Clown
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Clownfish are ideal beginner fish, since they are easy-to-care-for, hardy, and don't require a huge aquarium to survive happily. Because wild clownfish always stay in or near anemones in a reef environment, they require very little space. They readily eat most fresh, frozen, and dried foods. Plus, provided that there are no predators in their tank, they typically have a reasonably lengthy life span. The host anemones that are found in their natural environment of the clownfish can be difficult to care for in captivity and are not recommended for the saltwater novice. Very high output aquarium lighting such as metal halides is often required.
Keeping clownfish can also add a new element of fun to your family life. If fed on a consistent schedule, clownfish will quickly learn to anticipate feeding time, swim to the top of the aquarium, and "beg" for food. And since clownfish rarely swim long distances, their wobbly swimming style is rather clumsy and humorous . . . hence their common name.
These intelligent, curious fish offer educational rewards, especially for children who are not familiar with fish or aquariums. Because clownfish in a home aquarium are not under the constant threat of predators, they can roam, feed, and reproduce without worry - providing interesting illustrations of fish behavior. Most importantly, aquarium keeping teaches an appreciation for the delicate balance of reef life and advances the ideals of conservation and environmentalism among hobbyists.
Clownfish tend to be fairly small and relatively slow-moving. With this in mind it’s important that they aren’t placed with larger, carnivorous aggressive fish such as Lionfish and Groupers. Otherwise, there are not many limits to the type of tank in which Ocellaris Clownfish can live. They do equally well in fish only tanks, tanks with live rock or none, community tanks, more aggressive tanks (to a degree, of course) and full reef tanks. They do not need an anemone to live or stay healthy in captivity. Although the symbiotic relationship of a clownfish hosting in an anemone is a beautiful thing, many clowns in captivity will not ever host one, even when given the opportunity.
Here are some great tank-mates for clownfish, depending on the setup of the tank:
Damselfish ~ Tangs ~ Wrasses ~ Blennies ~ Angelfish ~ Dartfish ~ Puffers Gobies ~ Dartfish ~ Pseudochromis ~ Soft or Hard Corals ~ Anemones ~ Marine Invertebrates
The one thing to keep in mind is that clownfish will often not get along with other clownfish in the tank. Ocellaris Clownfish are among the least aggressive, however, multiple clownfish (even other Ocellaris) will often fight. If you want to have multiple clowns, it is best to introduce them at the same time and make sure they have plenty of room. Alternatively, you could introduce a smaller clownfish, which is likely a male or juvenile, to a more established, somewhat larger clownfish. The larger clown will likely be aggressive to the newcomer but as long as they are not both females, the smaller fish will usually submit to the female and become the male. They will often pair up and sometimes even become mates.
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