5 Circumstances that Warrant a Species (or Specimen) Tank

A diverse community of marine fishes presents quite a visual feast, especially when housed in a reef system brimming with colorful corals. However, in some stocking situations, it’s preferable to avoid the “typical” marine community (if there is such a thing) in favor of a single-species or even a single-specimen tank. Ah, but if you … [Read More]

Rock Beauty Angelfish: a Finicky Feeder Best Left in the Sea

On one of my earliest dives down in the Florida Keys back in the 1990s, a gorgeous yellow and black angelfish caught my attention as I drifted over a section of reef. In my mind’s eye, I envision the angel hovering boldly above a large barrel sponge, but I can’t be sure whether that’s actually … [Read More]

Sometimes You Need to Overfeed Your Fish

You’ve heard time and again, here at Saltwater Smarts and elsewhere, that overfeeding is one of the surest ways to cause ill health in fish and pollute your aquarium water. The usual recommendation is to offer foods in very small quantities that the fish can consume within just a few minutes. And when it comes … [Read More]

The Candy Basslet: A Sweet Deepwater Denizen on Many a Hobbyist’s Wish List

Ask any group of marine fishkeepers to name their most sought-after species—the fishes they’d really love to own if money and availability were no object—and most of them will likely place the candy basslet (Liopropoma carmabi) somewhere close to the top of that list. Ah, but despite its stunning good looks and very manageable size, … [Read More]

The Pyramid Butterflyfish: A Hardy, Reef-Safe Chaetodontid

While many of the butterflyfishes are challenging—if not outright impossible—to maintain in captivity for one reason or another, there are various species that go against the grain and make excellent or reasonably solid aquarium candidates. Among the “reasonably solid” species is the pyramid butterflyfish (Hemitaurichthys polylepis)—a generally hardy, adaptable, not-too-difficult-to-feed, and beautiful chaetodontid from the … [Read More]

When Piscine Personalities Collide: Incompatible Energy

When trying to determine whether different species of marine fish will cohabit peacefully in the same aquarium, we usually ask ourselves whether the combination will result in one fish eating another or whether interspecific squabbling is likely to be an issue based on disparate levels of territorial aggression. If we can answer “no” to each … [Read More]

A Pint-Sized, Potentially Picky Lionfish: Dendrochirus biocellatus

Yearn to keep a lionfish but don’t think you have the tank space to accommodate one? You might want to think again! While having a small to medium-sized tank might preclude keeping some of the popular Pterois species, there are several lionfish species in the genus Dendrochirus that are small and retiring enough to be … [Read More]

Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are! 5 Reasons Marine Fish Go Into Hiding

You’ve spent the long dollar on a gorgeous marine fish with the hopes that it will bring new life and interest to your tank, but then it refuses to reveal itself for more than a passing glimpse. What could be more aggravating? Worse yet is the specimen that seems to disappear completely, giving you that … [Read More]

4 Techniques for Target Feeding Marine Fish

Feeding saltwater fish isn’t always a simple matter of plopping food in the water and looking on as the frenzy ensues. In any community of fishes, some species (or individual specimens) are going to be more aggressive in their eating habits than others, so oftentimes you have to be a bit more targeted in your … [Read More]