From Microcosm Aquarium Explorer
A dramatic, disruptive color pattern, as well as a strong constitution, has made this bold damselfish a favorite in new tanks and a good beginner’s fish.
Other common name(s):
- Black and White Damsel
- Fourstriped Damsel
- Whitetail Dascyllus
- Humbug Damsel, Humbug Damselfish
Habitat: Reef. In nature, it lives in and near branching stony corals and is most comfortable when given plenty of sheltering places.
Maximum length: 7.9 cm (3 in)
Minimum aquarium size: 114 L (30 gal)
Water: Marine 24 °C (75 °F) - 28 °C (82 °F)
General swimming level: Mid-level to bottom.
Omnivore. Feed meaty and algae-based foods at least once a day.
This fish will usually hover near a staghorn-type coral colony, real or faux, waiting for food morsels to be swept past by water currents.
Demersal (on or near the bottom) spawners that tend and protect their broods.
While youngsters make good neighbors, as they get larger, they can often become combative. Placing them in a small tank with smaller, passive species is asking for future troubles. In the wild, these fish live in stable groups consisting of three to 25 individuals. Attempting to replicate this natural social order can be difficult in captivity. Ideally, start with a group of juveniles and allow them to establish a pecking order. The most dominant fish will mature into a male (the subordinates will become females or be asexual). In a small tank, chaos may rule the day and only the most dominant fish will remain. They are good with ornamental invertebrates and will help oxygenate stony coral colonies.