Mixing Different Breeds of Clownfish in a Saltwater Aquarium
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Mixing Different Breeds of Clownfish in a Saltwater Aquarium

The aquatic world seems too small for the many different species of clownfish to co-exist. Imagine these are but elfin fellows that belong to the small variety of fish. Their interesting temperament best explains it all. They place high regard on their territorial dominance that will not settle for shared space. This makes it tough to answer the query can you mix clownfish in aquarium?

Tank Life

The clownfish is one of the most popular types of saltwater fish. It is ideal to house it in a spacious saltwater tank with low nitrate level. It must have sufficient lighting and water movement, too. Regular feeding is also advised to ensure nutrition. All these comprise its basic needs that are inimical to sustain its normal condition. This way, its temperament can be likely controlled to lessen the tendency for aggression.

Ideally, it is a social fish. It exists in small school of fish. In general, it can cohabit with small folks with large and predator fishes on the exception. It can be readily outsized by huge variety of fishes, though it can be equally aggressive. It exhibits a strong tendency to protect its territory. It should then be given its own exclusive and separate sanctuary among the group.

Affiliate Existence

More often than not, Nemo can be found under the tentacle care of sea anemones. The clownfish has a natural affiliation with this creature. It is best described by the symbiotic relationship referred as commensalism. This form of cohabitation nurtures the small fellow without harming the other.

The Sea anemone is one of the harmful aquatic species. It secretes toxins as part of its defensive mechanism. This can be fatal so enemies keep a distance at all times. Unlike other creatures, the clownfish is immune to the toxin with its sugary mucus covering. It sources out food from the leftovers of the sea anemone.

The co-evolution leads to the adoption of sea anemone as host to the small group of clownfish. It is a perfect hide out from predators lingering around. In turn, the clownfish team vows to defend its host from any peril, too. Thus, can you mix clownfish in aquarium? The answer can be on the affirmative given a small group of fish in spacious waters with a sea anemone or some soft corals as the host.

Species Co-existence

Can you mix clownfish in aquarium? There is a contradiction of temperament between the clownfish’ social and aggressive inclination. It can mingle with others but its dominant attitude seems not to permit the idea. It may vary depending on the type of species. Hence, it is safe to keep it with its own kind. The false percula fish can live with similar species. The maroon clownfish can be very aggressive and not so friendly in captivity with others, though.

Moreover, the clownfish species have peculiar sexual preference called sequential hermaphroditism. The species are born as males and decide for their gender later on after finding a pair. The female grows bigger than the male. She becomes the lead protector of the group. Upon her death, another male succeeds by gender change. Usually, in the small group there is one particular couple. Aggression is likely to occur among male species. Hence, it is advisable to limit the clownfish into a pair inside the saltwater aquariumas one will soon assume the feminine role.

Then, can you mix clownfish in aquarium? The answer depends on the circumstances provided.

Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons / by Michael Arvedlund

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