Redspotted Sandperch

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Parapercis schauinslandii - (Steindachner, 1900)
Redspotted Sandperch

A comical, bottom-hopping species that is safe with aquarium corals. Scott W. Michael


This is a droll-looking, attractively marked fish that will spend its time resting on the bottom, hopping from one place to another, sometimes shooting up into the water column to grab a piece of food.

Family: Pinguipedidiae

Other common name(s):

  • Schauinsland’s Sandperch

Native range:

Habitat: Reef-sand interface. Provide hiding places on the aquarium bottom. (Ideally, make a depression in the sand and place a flat rock over it, leaving an entrance hole for the sandperch.)

Maximum length: 13 cm (5 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 209 L (55 gal)

Water: Marine 24 °C (75 °F) - 28 °C (82 °F)

General swimming level: Bottom.


Carnivore. Feed meaty seafoods at least twice a day.

Aquarium Compatibility

This species will quarrel with species that live on the aquarium bottom and that have a similar body plan (more elongate). Gobies, for example, are a frequent target. In many cases, however, the sandperch itself is the target of more aggressive species like ­larger damselfishes, larger dottybacks and hawkfishes. Keep only one per small to moderate-size tank—if the tank is large enough (e.g., 135 gallons [513 L] or more) it is possible to keep two individuals in the same tank. Select juveniles or two individuals that differ in size so it is more likely that you will acquire a heterosexual pair. It is not a threat to corals, but will eat worms, shrimps and crabs.


Egg scatterers that produce pelagic eggs, often in midwater mating rituals. Both eggs and larvae that drift with plankton in the water column and settle back onto a reef at about the time of metamorphosis. These are among the most challenging types of marine fishes to propagate in captivity.


It will jump out of an open tank if startled. Be sure the aquarium is always covered.

Reference: 101 Best Saltwater Fishes
Image credit: SWM
Text credit: SWM