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15 Beautiful Types of Clownfish (With Pictures) – AquariumStoreDepot


Clownfish are one of the most popular aquarium fish, if not the most popular. Finding Nemo, a Pixar animated film, made these saltwater fish famous, but their vibrant colours and ease of care keep them at the top. Due to the efforts of breeders, there are many different types of clownfish available for purchase.

Clownfish are one of the most popular aquarium fish, if not the most popular. Finding Nemo, a Pixar animated film, made these saltwater fish famous, but their vibrant colours and ease of care keep them at the top. Due to the efforts of breeders, there are many different types of clownfish available for purchase.

Clownfish: An Overview

There are currently 30 different species of clownfish in the Amphiprioninae subfamily, all of which vary in shape, size, and disposition. This classic fish has been further varied by the aquarium hobby, which has introduced more intricate patterns and decorations, as well as several longfin varieties.

The following are by far the most frequent species encountered:

  • Ocellaris clownfish/false percula clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris)
  • Clownfish Percula (Amphiprion percula)
  • Clownfish made of tomatoes (Amphiprion frenatus)
  • Clownfish Clarkii (Amphiprion clarkii)
  • Skunk clownfish in pink (Amphiprion perideraion)
  • Clownfish in the colour of maroon (Premnas biaculeatus)

Clownfish are distinguished by their orange body and alternating three white stripes with a black outline. Because they are sequential hermaphrodites, these fish are frequently found in pairs. This means that fish are born as males and have the unusual ability to transform into females when the situation calls for it; at this moment, the female will grow in size.

Clownfish and sea anemones have a symbiotic relationship in which the clownfish obtains protection from predators and the anemone receives food and waste from the fish. Clownfish have evolved to exude a protective mucus that protects them from anemone stings; interestingly, some clownfish have this mucus already present in their skin, while others must acclimatise to the anemone’s unique sting.

However, in the aquarium, this mutualism does not always apply. Many clownfish are aquacultured, thus they may not feel compelled to host an anemone. While this may frustrate some newcomers to the sport, clownfish are still one of the greatest fish for any saltwater aquarium setup.

What Is the Life Expectancy of Clownfish?

Clownfish can live for a long period, so be sure the species you choose is appropriate with your reef tank.

In captivity, clownfish live for 3 to 5 years on average. It’s not unheard of for them to live for more than a decade in perfect conditions. They are highly tough and will withstand the majority of tank wrecks and tank transfers, though we strongly advise avoiding them!

Tank requirements for clownfish

Clownfish are extremely durable and can adapt to a variety of environments. Fish only (FO), fish only with live rock (FOWLR), or full reef installations are all options. Most enthusiasts prefer to keep them in pairs, although they can also be kept on their own. Beginners will enjoy these ocean fish.

A 10 gallon tank is ideal for a pair, however a 20 gallon tank will provide extra swimming room as well as additional tank mates. Clownfish create territories and stay close to those places in the tank that they identify as their own.

The pair may host an anemone if one is introduced, though this is not assured even if they are wild-caught. On the other side, you might have a pair that ignores the anemone entirely and instead hosts a powerhead.

Sleeping in strange positions at night is another amusing clownfish characteristic. When you observe your marine fish swimming parallel to the edge of the glass, it can be unnerving at first, but this is normal clownfish behaviour and nothing to be concerned about.

Which Anemone Should You Use With Your Clownfish?

There are some clownfish/anemone combinations that work better than others, though this is never guaranteed. Here are some of the most popular and successful combos (video source).

As most kinds of clownfish stem from the ocellaris clownfish species, most hobbyists will need to hunt for a bubble tip anemone (Entacmaea quadricolor), splendid sea anemone (Heteractis magnifica), sebae anemone (Heteractis crispa), or gigantic carpet anemone (Stichodactyla gigantea) (Stichodactyla gigantea).

Keep in mind that clownfish do not require the presence of a host anemone in order to live a full life. In fact, they mostly need their anemones for protection in the environment, something they shouldn’t require in a reef tank. If you truly want your clownfish to host an anemone, however, you’ll have to train them.

Also, other similar-looking corals, like as Euphyllia, may be present in the tank with clownfish. This can be stressful and harmful to the coral’s general health.

In terms of water conditions, no matter whatever type of clownfish you choose, their care requirements are pretty similar. However, because spatial needs and hostility vary widely between species, it’s still important to consider the fish’s adult size and temperament.

There are many different types of clownfish to choose from, with one for every tank setup. Let’s have a look at the 15 different kinds of clownfish.

Clownfish: The Top 15 Types

The most classic species of clownfish is the ocellaris clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris), commonly known as the false percula clownfish. Their three white stripes against their bright orange body make them instantly recognisable, however they may also occur in black and white.

These 15 fish keep small, reaching a mature size of around 3 inches. This enables them to be stored in nano tanks with ease. Clowns of the genus Ocellaris are also relatively easy to produce, allowing them to be aquacultured. This lowers their cost, develops a tougher fish, and makes them more accessible to enthusiasts.

These fish have been the foundation for many designer breeds, as we will see, due to their classic appearance and ease of breeding.

1. Snowflake Clownfish

Clownfish are one of the most popular aquarium fish, if not the most popular. Finding Nemo, a Pixar animated film, made these saltwater fish famous, but their vibrant colours and ease of care keep them at the top. Due to the efforts of breeders, there are many different types of clownfish available for purchase.

When completely developed, snowflake clownfish reach a length of about 4 inches. The width of the white stripes vary between individuals, which is the fundamental difference between snowflake and ocellaris clowns. Snowflake ocellaris, premium snowflake ocellaris, and super snowflake ocellaris are the three grades of snowflake clowns, according on the level of the variation.

Snowflake ocellaris is a kind of clownfish. This is the most frequent grade, and it resembles the common ocellaris clownfish the most. The white stripes on the snowflake ocellaris are uneven and widened. The orange background can be deepened and the white lines can be faded in.

Snowflake ocellaris are resilient fish that can be kept in a variety of setups, regardless of their grade.

2. Picasso Clownfish

Another popular clownfish breed that is very easy to find at your local aquarium store is the Picasso clownfish. These 3 inch percula clownfish (Amphiprion percula) are based on the percula clownfish (Amphiprion percula).

Picasso clownfish feature extended white stripes that are based on a grading system, similar to the snowflake clownfish. Because they’re percula clownfish, their orange base coat might occasionally contain yellow flecks. Picasso clownfish are divided into two categories: normal and premium.

Clownfish by Pablo Picasso. The Picasso clownfish’s standard grade has soft extended white stripes, which are especially noticeable in the middle and third bars.

Picasso clownfish of the highest quality. This grade is a considerably more exaggerated version of the ordinary Picasso, and at least two conjoined white stripes are required.

The Picasso clownfish has misbar variants, which can result in the stripe nearest to the caudal fin being missing or broken.

3. Frostbite Clownfish

This is when distinguishing clownfish breeds becomes more difficult. The frostbite clownfish is a form of ocellaris clownfish that is readily confused with a snowflake. These fish are actually a cross between premium snowflake and Wyoming white clowns. However, there are a few methods to tell them apart!

Frostbite clownfish can reach a length of 4 inches. Their bodies are completely white, save for a few places here and there that resemble frostbite’s effects, earning them the designer moniker. Even if you have a juvenile frostbite clownfish with a lot of orange spots, those spots will gradually develop darker and deeper until they are black.

These fish, which are a species of ocellaris clown, have relatively modest requirements.

4. Wyoming White Clownfish

These fish resemble the Maine blizzard clownfish in appearance. Wyoming white clownfish, on the other hand, are descended from ocellaris clownfish, whereas Maine blizzard clownfish are descended from percula clownfish. The difference is subtle, but it can be noticed in their eye colour and the number of spines on their dorsal fin.

Wyoming white clownfish have a maximum size of 4 inches. The black spot above their gills, which contrasts with their virtually all-white body, is the most distinguishing feature of these fish. As the fish grows older, all of the orange marks will turn black.

These fish are uncommon and have only recently begun to be commercially bred. Their requirements are the same as those of conventional ocellaris clowns.

5. Phantom Clownfish

Though still an ocellaris, the phantom clownfish is the first black-colored clown on this list. These fish are 4 inches long when fully matured.

These clownfish are a delicate blend of premium snowflake ocellaris, black ice clownfish, and super black Darwin ocellaris. A velvety black base colour with jagged white streaks results.

A longfin variation of Phantom clownfish has also been produced. The fins of these longfin clownfish are more rounded with a wider margin than those of other longfin clownfish, but their phantom colours remain intact.

6. Domino Clownfish

A black clownfish with a single white dot on its back. As a fish grows older, it turns darker.

The domino clownfish gets its name from a single white spot over its gills that contrasts with its midnight black body; this spot can sometimes extend into a misbar around the head. The only additional colour on this fish is its brown snout, which can vary in appearance and intensity.

These clownfish are descended from black ocellaris clownfish and reach a maximum size of 3 inches. They are a darker brown colour as youngsters, which fades to black as the fish matures.

Longfin variations of the domino clownfish are also available. These fish, on the other hand, are much lighter in colour and retain their juvenile brown hues. Apart from the dot on the gills, they are also more likely to have unusual white markings. Misbars around the head and in the centre of the body are examples of this.

The domino clownfish, as an ocellaris clown, has few special requirements.

7. Darwin Black Ocellaris Clownfish

A black snowflake with a misbar stripe in the middle, resembling a typical ocellaris.

The Darwin black ocellaris clownfish is a straightforward variety of the ocellaris clownfish, with the same three stripes but a completely black body. These fish reach a length of 4 inches and require the same care as their more colourful siblings.

Darwin black clowns get their name from their natural habitat, which is located off the coast of Darwin, Australia. The collection of these fish is restricted since they dwell in highly constrained environments. As a result, the majority of people accessible in the aquarium hobby are captive-bred.

Another variety is the Darwin misbar, which has white stripes that are interrupted while preserving the black base colour.

8. Midnight Clownfish

It’s impossible to miss the midnight clownfish. These fish are a deep black hue that adds a unique dimension to the aquarium.

Midnight clownfish, like other dark species of clownfish, are lighter colours of brown as juveniles. Some of the brown on their snout stays, but the more coveted midnight clowns will have a completely black body.

The midnight lightning clownfish is a type of midnight clownfish with touches of white. These fish are the offspring of midnight and phantom clowns, and they have a distinct, short, and jagged white patch beneath the dorsal fin. As you might expect, this streak of white against a black background resembles a bolt of lightning.

A jagged first stripe and a misbar third stripe are common with midnight lightning clowns.

Both midnight lighting and midnight clowns are ocellaris breeds that don’t require any extra attention.

9. Black Storm Clownfish

A popular designer clownfish with a Storm Trooper-like appearance.

Despite their extensive history, black storm clownfish have grown in popularity in recent years and are very easy to find at aquarium retailers.

These clownfish are descended from a long history of DaVinci ocellaris and black ocellaris clownfish breeding. The fish were black with white dots and clear lines between hues due to a highly unusual mutation. Only a few years ago, this resulted in the appearance of the white-faced black storm clownfish.

A longfin black storm clownfish variation was developed shortly after that. Black storm clownfish grow to be about 4 inches long in both kinds.

10. Snow Storm Clownfish

The snow storm clownfish is an ocellaris-based breed that is a mix between a black storm clownfish and a phantom clownfish. They can grow up to 4 inches in length.

An all-white fish with black eyes, fins, and lips developed from this cross. While the majority of white clownfish have colour on their faces, the snow storm has only colour in its eyes.

In the same way, these fish have been bred to develop lengthy fins.

11. Tomato Clownfish

Tomato clownfish (Amphiprion frenatus) are widely available, but they are not one of the most popular clownfish species. These fish get their name from their vivid red coloration and circular shape, which resembles that of a fruit. As adults, they have a single white stripe across their gills, while as juveniles, they have two.

These clownfish are among the largest on the market, reaching a maximum size of 6 inches when fully grown. They are usually more aggressive than other clownfish species, and they are sometimes referred to as one of the most aggressive clownfish. They work well alone or in prearranged pairings as a result of this. Other clownfish species will not be tolerated.

12. Gold Striped Maroon Clownfish

The gold stripe maroon clownfish is a huge and handsome fish with gold stripes. This is the largest clownfish species available, with a maximum size of 6 inches. This fish is a more ornate version of the maroon clownfish (Premnas biaculeatus).

With a deep red body and three thin stripes, gold stripe maroon clownfish are quite similar to white stripe maroon clownfish; however, gold maroons have gold stripes whereas white maroons have white stripes. Gold maroons don’t develop their trademark hues until they’re at least a year old, so this can be challenging.

The gold stripe maroon clownfish has spines on their cheeks behind their eyes, which is a unique trait.

13. DaVinci Ocellaris Clownfish

The DaVinci ocellaris is a cross between a Wyoming white clownfish and a standard ocellaris clownfish, resulting in swirls that resemble the brush strokes of an artist. These fish are quite similar to Picasso clownfish, except instead of perculas, they come from ocellaris clownfish.

DaVinci ocellaris clownfish come in three different grades, all of which exceed 3 inches in length: DaVinci ocellaris clownfish grade B, DaVinci ocellaris clownfish grade A, and DaVinci ocellaris clownfish grade extreme.

Grade B DaVinci ocellaris clownfish These fish are the lowest grade and feature three prominent swirly white stripes against a deep orange body; two stripes may be joined on one side of the body, but only on one side.

Grade A DaVinci ocellaris clownfish This grade has the same colours as the previous grade, but at least two stripes on both sides of the body are joined.

Extreme grade DaVinci ocellaris clownfish These clownfish are the most sought-after, with all three stripes joined on each side of the body to form a magnificent work of art.

14. Nearly Naked Clownfish

The practically nude clownfish, probably the best-named fish in the reef aquarium hobby, has lost its stripes. Instead, these fish are all burnt orange, with only a few scattered white stripe remnants.

These 3 inch ocellaris clowns come from a long history of carefully bred ocellaris clowns. As a result, they add a unique element to the aquarium without requiring additional maintenance.

15. Longfin Mocha Clownfish

The longfin mocha clownfish is an unusual-looking fish. These clownfish have the same colours and stripes as their distant ocellaris parents, but their fins are much longer.

Longfin variants haven’t quite caught on in many saltwater aquariums, but they do have a certain elegance about them. Though they don’t require any extra attention, it’s a good idea to cover intake grates with a sponge to protect their delicate fins.

What Kind Of Clownfish Is The Most Rare?

The McCullochi clownfish (Amphiprion mccullochi), sometimes known as the whitesnout anemonefish1, is one of the rarest forms of clownfish.

With a dark brown body, a single white stripe, and a white-tipped mouth, these fish are unlike any other ocellaris clownfish. Their appearance, however, isn’t what makes them so uncommon.

Instead, these fish have a small natural range around Lord Howe Island, an Australian island off the coast. Because these waters are rarely fished, obtaining a McCullochi clownfish is practically impossible.

The McCullochi clownfish is not the most expensive clownfish, while being one of the rarest. A peacekeeper maroon clownfish sold for about $9,000 in 2016. These maroon clownfish (Premnas biaculeatus) feature elaborate webbing all over their bodies, making them one of the most ornamental breeds available.

Which Clownfish Is The Most Common?

Before we get into the most expensive and sought-after clownfish breeds, let’s take a look at one of the most common types of clownfish: the ocellaris.

Final Thoughts

There are a plethora of designer clownfish to choose from, and the list is growing by the day. You’ve got your standard false percula, real percula, tomato, skunk, maroon, and Clarkii clownfish, but sometimes you just need something different.

Fortunately, most captive-bred clownfish are descended from these original species, so their care requirements are mostly unchanged. Always do your homework on the fish you want to buy before putting them in your reef tank!

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