Thirty species of Clownfish are recognized. In the wild they all form symbiotic mutualisms with sea anemones. Depending on species, clownfish are overall yellow, orange, reddish or blackish, and many show white bars or patches. The largest can reach a length of 18 centimetres (7.1 in), while the smallest barely can reach 10 centimetres (3.9 in).
Clownfish are native to warmer waters of the Indian and Pacific oceans, including the Great Barrier Reef and the Red Sea. While most species have restricted distributions, others are widespread. Clownfish live at the bottom of shallow seas in sheltered reefs or in shallow lagoons.
Clownfish and sea anemones have a symbiotic, mutualistic relationship, each providing a number of benefits to the other. The individual species are generally highly host specific. The sea anemone protects the Clownfish from predators, as well as providing food through the scraps left from the anemone’s meals. In return, the Clownfish defends the anemone from its predators, and cleans it from parasites.
When a sea anemone is not available in an aquarium setting, the Clownfish may settle in some varieties of soft corals, or large polyp stony corals. Once an anemone or coral has been adopted, the Clownfish will defend it. As there is less pressure to forage for food in an aquarium, it is common for clownfish to remain within 2-4 inches of their host for an entire lifetime.
This little guy was spending a great deal of time rubbing his body back and forth across the smooth surface of the coral. I thought he was so beautiful!
Thanks for looking and have a wonderful Monday! 🙂