close map

Commonly Asked Questions

Appears in Georgia Aquarium's:
  • Mutualistic Animals Habitat (Tropical Diver)

Range / Habitat

  • Occurs in the Western Pacific from the Philippine Islands and Java to Pohnpei and New Caledonia, north to the Ryukyu Islands, and south to the Great Barrier Reef.
  • Bottom dweller found among coral or in shallow protected lagoons and inshore reefs at depths of 3-59 feet (1-18 m).
  • It is usually found in small groups spread over a small area. 

Physical Characteristics

  • Small, broad-headed and elongated, scaleless fish that typically reaches about 3 inches (8 cm) in length. 
  • A brilliantly-colored fish, especially the male, with striking patterns of primarily green and orange.
  • Classified as a “dragonet.”

Diet / Feeding

  • Diet consists of small benthic (bottom dwelling) invertebrates.

Conservation Status

  • “Not Evaluated” on the IUCN Red List

Additional Information

  • Sexually dimorphic, like other dragonets: male and female are physically dissimilar. Male is larger and exhibits a longer, spined dorsal fin that it uses for display.
  • Body produces odorous, foul-tasting, toxic mucus to compensate for lack of protective scales. This protects the animal from parasites and deters potential predators. 
  • Popular aquarium fish but possibly difficult to feed. Only recommended for advanced aquarists.

Sources

Micronesian Reef Fishes.  Meyers, R. F., pg. 232
Reef Fishes, Volume 1.  Michael, S. W., pgs. 56, 138
Fishes of the World - An Illustrated Dictionary.  Wheeler, A., pg. 343
An Encyclopedia of Fishes. 2nd Edition, pg. 143
www.fishbase.org
Photo Credit: Kelly Hood