Aquarium Fish

Blue Damsel/Blue Devil

posted: 05/15/12
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Blue Damsel/Blue Devil
Courtesy of Drs. Foster and Smith
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The Blue Damselfish, also known as the Blue Devil Damselfish, is the Molly of saltwater aquariums. It is a very colorful, hardy, and active fish. The female is all blue; the male has an orange tail, and is known by the common name of Orangetail Blue Damselfish. In the wild, Blue Damselfish are found throughout reefs, usually busy defending a small territory. The Blue Damselfish has the ability to hide in a hole or crevice and darken to an almost black color. This usually happens when it is threatened. After the perceived threat is gone, it will turn electric blue in a matter of seconds.

The Blue Damselfish is somewhat aggressive, so its housing should be able to easily accommodate multiple specimens. It is a good fish for beginners, and makes an ideal companion fish for a saltwater tank of over 100 liters (30 gallons), and as a great companion for reefs and invertebrates. As the fish matures it may become aggressive, causing problems with the selection of other species to be added to the aquarium. If keeping with other damselfish, provide multiple hiding places to break up territories and decrease aggression.

The Blue Damselfish diet should consist of flaked and frozen foods, and herbivore preparations.

The Blue Damselfish is probably the best selling marine fish in the United States. Its hardiness and small size make it the most common fish used for cycling a saltwater tank.

Fish Facts

Name: Blue Damsel/Blue Devil (Abudefduf cyaneus, Chrysiptera cyanea)

Family: Pomacentridae

Range: Indo-Pacific Region

Size: Up to 2.5 inches

Diet: Omnivore

Tank Set-up: Marine: Coral or rock, plants

Tank Conditions: 72-78°F; sg 1.020-1.025; pH 8.1-8.4

Minimum Tank Capacity: 30 gallon

Light: High

Temperament: Semi-aggressive

Swimming Level: No specific level

Care Level: Easy

Care Level: Egg Depositor

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