Red Mandarinfish – Profile | Traits | Diet | Habitat | Care

Red Mandarinfish

The Red Mandarinfish is a rare variation of the Blue Mandarin that differs by having a superb red body and virtually fully red pelvic and pectoral fins. It is a member of the family Callionymidae that grows to the most size of 4”.

Red Mandarinfish profile

They originate within the Western Pacific from Indonesia and Sumatra. In the wild, they’re discovered on silty bottoms with coral and rubble, within the aquarium provide them with loads of rockwork by which to hunt and conceal. They could be saved in mated pairs or singly.

The head and body of the Red Mandarin Dragonet are a mazelike mixture of blue, orange, and red. Males could also be distinguished from females by their extra-elongated first dorsal backbone.

The red variation of the Mandarin fish is a rare find within the trade and is extraordinarily popular with aquarists due to its uncommon magnificence. Unlike the green mandarin, this red variant has a lot wider and more pronounced red stripes and red pectoral fins.

It needs to be saved in a well-established, 30-gallon or bigger aquarium with loads of live rock, live sand, and hiding locations. It is reasonably hardy in mature reef aquariums if given particular care. It just isn’t overly aggressive in direction of different fish, apart from conspecifics.

It feeds on a wide range of vitamin-enriched live brine shrimp, live black worms, and natural prey on tiny crustaceans present in live rock and live sand.

Yes, red mandarin gobies are completely reefed secure. They are peaceable and won’t hurt different fish, corals, or invertebrates, apart from the copepods they eat.


Mandarin gobies are small saltwater fish, typically reaching solely about 3-4 inches in total size which have an estimated lifespan of about 10-15 years.

However, it isn’t unusual for them to live for about 2-4 years in a house aquarium (as long as they don’t starve to death within the weeks after being introduced house).

Feeding Behavior

Notoriously fussy eaters, most mandarin gobies want live copepods and different tiny residing crustaceans, over virtually every other meal merchandise, which is why it’s strongly really useful to maintain this fish with a mature refugium, the place natural shares of copepods could be replenished.

They may additionally settle for live mysid shrimp, child live brine shrimp, additionally known as artemia, in addition to different meaty meals, like black worms.

Red Mandarinfish


A red mandarin goby eats copepods, a small invertebrate (crustacean) that may be a staple of many marine fish species. But in contrast to different saltwater fish species generally saved in house aquariums, the red mandarin goby typically solely eats live meals like copepods and sometimes brine shrimp or mysis shrimp.

Red Mandarinfish Care

Red Mandarin gobies are extraordinarily popular however notoriously arduous to maintain saltwater aquarium fish. They are peaceable to the purpose of being shy and customarily solely eat a particular live meal known as a copepod.

It is difficult to maintain sufficient live copepods in a tank to maintain the mandarinfish alive.

It is unlikely that juvenile or adult red mandarins eat rotifers in any significant quantity. Rotifers are generally used as surrogate first meals for aquacultured marine fish larvae which can be solely millimeters in size and have very tiny mouths.

But these larvae rapidly outgrow rotifers and have to maneuver on to more nutritious meals.

Now that you understand these are delicate fishes with very particular feeding necessities–it is very important to consider a few of the following traits beneath, to make sure you and your fish have the perfect probability for fulfillment.

Perhaps crucial consideration, when choosing a red mandarinfish in your reef tank–is to hunt out captive-bred mandarins first.

Aquaculture breakthrough for this species made an enormous splash a number of years back, and now numbers of those fish are supplied into the interest, sustainably raised by way of aquaculture.

These fishes are actually born and raised beneath comparable situations to what can be present in your tank–and they’re additionally raised to just accept industrial meals, which must also make caring for them a bit simpler.

Since we all know that these species are finicky eaters, liable to starve to death of their house aquarium, it is very important to search for indicators of hunger if you decide the person to travel house with.

There are two indicators to search for, specifically. The first is whether or not the fish is definitely consuming within the native fish store.

Ask about whether or not the fish has been consuming usually. Stop by the store throughout feeding time or ask to see the fish eat.

Also, keep away from any people (except your plan is to rescue them) that look skinny or malnourished. The traditional signal of malnourishment is to have a look at the muscle on their dorsal facet, simply behind the skull.

This needs to be one of the many thickest elements of the body. If it’s sunken in, that could be an indicator that the fish has been ravenous.

Of course, the argument might be made that the ravenous fish wants your love and a focus even more…simply know that your cash could develop into a charitable donation in that case, but your mission is commendable.

Red Mandarinfish in Aquarium

Red Mandarinfish is a very peaceable fish that may by no means present aggressive behavior or get into hassle. Actually, it seems that different fish won’t even pay them great consideration.

On the opposite hand, they’re very more likely to act territorial in direction of their very own species, so solely contemplate preserving a single fish or a mated pair–males will assault different males.

Harems (one male with more females) have been efficiently housed collectively, so this will likely even be an option, however is probably best left to the superior aquarist or would-be breeder.

Because they’re shy fish, they prefer to have a variety of hiding locations to really feel safe. During the daytime, they like to remain hidden between rocks, however, they could come out often and hop by way of corals.

It is finest for them to be saved with different peaceable fish of the same size, as they can not compete for meals very effectively with bigger ones.

They will not be widespread prey amongst predator fish, though some scorpionfish are identified to assault them infrequently, particularly throughout mating occasions.

If they really feel threatened, they could bury themselves within the sand, in accordance with Scott W. Michael in his book: Marine Fishes.

You must also rethink preserving these fishes for those who even have an anemone. This slow-moving and docile fish has been reportedly eaten by anemones, regardless that they have that protecting slime.

keep away from shopping for mandarin fish as a starter saltwater aquarium fish

Red Mandarinfish

Red Mandarinfish Behavior

Red mandarin fish will not be aggressive. They are peaceable, slow-moving creatures that are generally harassed by semi-aggressive and aggressive fish species.

However, these docile, psychedelic little gems are notoriously troublesome for the newbie saltwater aquarium owner to take care of—and infrequently starve to dying, beneath the watchful eye of their proud house owners.

So, let’s dive slightly deeper into the red mandarin fish and discover out what it takes to efficiently take care of them in your reef tank.

Red Mandarinfish Habitat

In the wild, Mandarin Gobies could be discovered within the Coral Triangle, around Malaysia, Australia, Philippines or Indonesia, the Great Barrier Reef, and within the Indo-Pacific Ocean space.

They live significantly in shallow lagoons and inshore reefs, particularly around rubble beds or lifeless corals, which supply them safety and privacy.

Standard reef aquarium water parameters will definitely meet their wants, assuming you make your individual saltwater with a good salt combine or purchase out of your native fish store and preserve your tank. The red mandarin fish is finest saved in a really mature tank with live rock, live sand, and a refugium.

They want slower water movement and are choosy eaters so that they don’t do effectively when combined into the chaos of an SPS-dominated tank or with gregarious and in any other case aggressive-feeding fishes.

The conventional recommendation is to maintain them in a really mature reef tank as a result of they are going to spend nearly all of their days scouring the live rock and consuming the tiny, natural fauna in your tank.

Your Red Mandarinfish dragonet will spend its days perched on and hovering simply above the live rock, scanning the nooks and crannies for any morsel of meals.

Red Mandarinfish Facts

The Mandarin Goby will get its name from its shiny coloration, which has similarities to the robes of ancient Chinese officers, known as mandarins
Although they’re typically known as Mandarin Gobies, these fish will not be certainly Gobies, however, they quite belong to the Dragonet family

Red Mandarinfish is choosy eaters, and you need to pay great consideration to what your particular fish would eat

Red Mandarinfish produces noxious mucus to guard themselves against being eaten. Some consider their shiny colors are a warning to would-be predators
Mandarin Gobies are secure to maintain in reef tanks, as they won’t nip at corals or anemone, simply be certain there isn’t more than a single male within the tank

Red Mandarinfish is choosy eaters and doesn’t compete effectively for meals, so pay great consideration to their feeding time to ensure they keep healthy

Red Mandarinfishes do display a restricted quantity of sexual dimorphism, which signifies that for those who look fastidiously, you’ll be able to inform women and men aside. Male mandarins have an elongated first dorsal backbone compared with females.

This is usually not a bulletproof differentiator, as a result of it’s possible that females might be confused with much less developed males, but it’s no less than a method so that you can slim down the lot in case you are considering attempting to breed these fish at home

While they’re typically cheap and broadly obtainable, they require a mature tank and will not be good newbie fish

More Interesting Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *