Apogon maculatus
Source: Kattegat Centeret - Kasper Hareskov Tygesen
Apogon maculatus
Source: Kattegat Centeret - Kasper Hareskov Tygesen
Apogon maculatus
Source: JJPhoto.dk

Facts

Latin name Apogon maculatus - (Poey, 1860)
Common name Flame Cardinal
Family Apogonidae - Apogon
Origin The Mexican Golf, West Atlantic
Max length 11.0 cm (4.3")

As aquarium fish

Minimum volume 150 l (40 gal)
Hardiness Delicate
Suitable for aquarium Suitable for most aquarium
Reef safe Always reef safe
Aggressiveness Aggressive towards similar species

Food

Maybee
  • Larger crustaceans (Shrimp, crabs...)
Recommended
  • Zooplankton (Cyclops, pods...)
  • Small crustaceans (Krill, mysis, artemia...)

Can be a threat towards small crustaceans

This species can be a threat towards small crustaceans, e.g. small shrimp.

Territorial towards its own species

In captivity this species will attempt to make its own little territory. It can therefore be very aggressive towards species of the same family, when not provided with sufficient space.

Sensitive during transportation

This species is very sensitive during transportation and acclimatizing into the aquarium.

Thrive best on their own

These fish flourish better without other members of the same species in the aquarium.

Looses colour in the aquarium

In the aquarium the colour of this species can become matte.

Food with plenty of pigment and generally a varied diet of high quality can help alleviate colour loss.

Nocturnal

This species is nocturnal and therefore the most active when the light is dimmed or turned off.

Hiding places

This species needs good hiding places, for example, between live rocks.

Description

A. pseudomaculatus resembles this species closely, but A. maculatus has a spot behind its eye, but not at the caudal peduncle.

Family description (Apogonidae)

Cardinalfish come in many different shapes and colours, generally they are well suited for aquaria.

Cardinalfish have a large mouth and a big appetite, take this into account with feeding  the other fish. These fish typically live off of Artemia, Mysis and krill. In the aquarium they will eat anything they can.

They will sometimes eat small shrimps and fish, so do be aware of this, but it is not normally a problem.

It is possible to keep several species together, if space allows. Some species will form  small shoals. They are normally peaceful towards other fish, but will sometimes fight among themselves if there isn't sufficient space or food.

Many species are nocturnal and will therefore often seek a hiding place during the day. This can be between stones, SPS corals and, in some cases, in an anemone and between spines of Sea urchins.

Cardinalfish are a good choice if ones wishes to attempt to start a breeding tank.

FishBase

Aquarium trade Yes
Distribution Western Atlantic: Canada (Ref. 5951) to Massachusetts (USA), Bermuda, Bahamas, and Gulf of Mexico (Ref. 26340) to Brazil.
English common names Flamefish
Spanish common names Cardenal manchado

References and further reading

About references

Scott W. Michael. 2001. Basslets, Dottybacks & Hawkfishes: v. 2 (Reef Fishes) - TFH Publications / Microcosm Ltd. - (English)
Bob Fenner. Cardinalfishes, Family Apogonidae, Pt. 1Pt. 2 - Wet Web Media - (English)

Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2014. FishBase. World Wide Web electronic publication. www.fishbase.org, version (08/2014).

Tags

nocturnal night, eats shrimp, cardinal
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