The peacock clownfish is a tropical marine fish found in the shallow water reefs and sheltered lagoons up to a depth of 15 feet. They grow to 2-5 inches and are known for their special relationship with the sea anemone.
Range & Habitat
In the Wild: Northwestern Australia, southeastern Asia, and as far north as the Ryukyu Islands of Japan.
At the Zoo: U.S.S Antiquities; reef tank.
Conservation Status: Not Evaluated
Clownfish are threatened by the aquarium trade. Adults are well protected due to their relationship with anemones, however their eggs are preyed upon by damselfishes, anemonefishes, wrasses, and brittle stars
In the Wild: zooplankton, copepods, algae, anemone parasites
At the Zoo: brine and mysis shrimp, chopped fish and vitamin gelatin
In Human Care: 3-5 years
Fun Facts about the Common Clownfish
- The Zoo’s original clownfish were acquired in 2003; all others since were born and raised at the zoo.
- Common clownfish have a special relationship with sea anemones. Usually, an anemone’s tentacles would sting the fish as it passes by. However, clownfish are somehow protected. Some think they have a special biochemical makeup in their mucous layer that gives them protection.
- The cartoon character Nemo from the movie “Finding Nemo” is a clownfish.
MarineBio.org. 2009. Amphiprion ocellaris, Clown anemonefish. Retrieved February 2, 2009, from MarineBio.org Web site: http://marinebio.org/species.asp?id=29.
Newcomb, D. and W. Fink. 2004. “Amphiprion ocellaris” (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed February 25, 2009 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Amphiprion_ocellaris.html.
Parkinson, K. and M. McGrouther. (2003, July). Find a fish: False-clown anemonefish. Retrieved February 2, 2009 from Australian Museum Web site: http://www.austmus.gov.au/fishes/fishfacts/fish/aocellaris.htm