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Geometric Pygmy Hawkfish (Plectranthias inermis)

Posted by Hilary , in Fish 26 October 2011 · 0 views

Posted ImagePlectranthias inermis - image © courtesy of J. Clipperton, www.digital-reefs.com"What is a good fish for my nano?" is a question we frequently hear. Limited space usually means smaller fish, and those aquarists with larger tanks often scratch their heads over this one. A fish that is fairly small, attractive, lively but not too active for a small tank, that isn't aggressive toward tank mates (what's the fun in only having one fish in the tank?), that is easily acclimated to tank living…. Tall bill! My answer? Try a Geometric Pygmy Hawkfish.These little fish are physically very similar to hawkfish, but are actually more closely-related to anthias. They are lovely with pinkish-red patterns on white and can be quite animated, moving around the tank and perching on sand, rock and coral. They stay small – usually only growing to about 2" – and are compatible with most tank mates. I have read that they do not do well with small crustaceans (sexy shrimp come to mind), but mine have done well with slightly larger invertebrates such as pom pom crabs. They thrive on meaty foods – I have fed frozen mysis, brine shrimp and frozen mixes such as Rod's Food with great success.The only issue I have found with these wonderful little fish is that while they are becoming more popular, they are still not widely available. If you are looking for a new addition to a small tank, however, it would be well worth your while to ask your local LFS to order one for you.

Hilary, do these fish pair up well like other hawkfish do?
I have read that more than one can be kept together, though I'm not sure that I would try it in a nano. Males may fight, however. I've never seen an LFS get more than one in at a time, though, so have never tried it myself.

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