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Blennies are some of the most memorable, entertaining and comical fishes of the sea. As this collection of photos will attest, they have won the hearts of many an unsuspecting aquarist with their charming personalities and distinguished mug shots consisting of extraordinarily large eyes and mouths. They are members of the Blenniidae Family, which includes 53 genera and 345 species (FishBase). Blennies are characterized by their blunt heads, elongated bodies and a continuous long dorsal fin; most species do not have scales. They are also known for the interesting antenna-like appendages found on their head known as "cirri," whose function is not completely understood.

Blennies are a great addition to both reef aquaria and fish-only systems, when housed with peaceful, non-predatory tankmates, as they are quite hardy and require little special care. They are ideal candidates for small aquariums of 30 gallons or less, and they generally prefer an aquarium with lots of live rock, where they will spend much of their time grazing on algae or seeking out small invertebrate morsels. As seen in the photos above, they prefer perching and hiding in any type of hole that's provided and can be quite amusing to watch.

Photos by Reef Central members. Text by Skip Attix.
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