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this second of a two-part series of ReefSlides,
we feature the fish of the subfamily Amphiprioninae,
affectionately referred to as "Clownfish"
or "Anemonefish" within the ornamental
marine fish trade. Generally, these highly sought
after fish partake in nature's most recognized
symbiotic relationships: the sea anemone and
the anemonefish. However, aquarists have learned
that once in captivity, anemonefish are not
choosy of which animal they use as a host. As
this series of photos will detail, anemonefish
will host in just about any coral within a marine
reef aquarium. Anemones are obviously the first
choice, but when they are not present, the clownfish
will opt for any large fleshy coral. During
desperate times, they can be found hosting within
leather corals or even zoanthids.
question that continues to stupefy the scientific
community is, "exactly how does the anemonefish
live within a coral that would normally kill
similarly-sized fish?" The answer remains
nothing more than various hypotheses at this
time, but one thing is known for sure: hobbyists
will continue to enjoy the magnificent relationship
between an anemonefish and its host anemone,
whether or not the scientists figure out one
of life's great mysteries.
Photos by Reef
Central members. Text by Henry C. Schultz III.
to visit Part I. For a more detailed article
on clownfish, click here.
Reefkeeping Magazine Reef Central, LLC-Copyright © 2008