Ostracion meleagris
Source: Oceanreef.dk - Kasper Hareskov Tygesen
Ostracion meleagris
Source: JJPhoto.dk
Ostracion meleagris
Source: JJPhoto.dk
Ostracion meleagris
Source: JJPhoto.dk
Ostracion meleagris
Source: Oceanreef.dk - Kasper Hareskov Tygesen
Ostracion meleagris
Source: Oceanreef.dk - Kasper Hareskov Tygesen
Ostracion meleagris
Source: Oceanreef.dk - Kasper Hareskov Tygesen

Facts

Latin name Ostracion meleagris - Shaw, 1796
Common name Whitespotted boxfish
Family Ostraciidae - Ostracion
Origin East Indian Ocean, West Indian Ocean, Australia, Japan, Indonesia, East Pacific, Central/West Pacific
Max length 25.0 cm (9.8")

As aquarium fish

Minimum volume 800 l (211 gal)
Hardiness Average
Suitable for aquarium Experience, preparation and extra care required
Reef safe Not reef safe
Aggressiveness Unknown

Food

Maybee
  • Larger crustaceans (Shrimp, crabs...)
Mostly
  • Other invertebrates
  • Soft coral
  • Large polyp stone coral (LPS)
Recommended
  • Macroalgea (Eg. seaweed / nori)
  • Small crustaceans (Krill, mysis, artemia...)

Poisonous skin.

This species has a toxin in its skin, which it releases when highly stressed or dying.

This poison can kill all the aquatic life in the aquarium, if unlucky.

Threat towards invertebrates

This species likes eating crustaceans, small bivalves and the like.

Eats tubeworms

This species likes to eat tubeworms.

Poor maneuverability

This species cannot maneuver in strong currents, especially so when small.

Pay particular attention to the pump’s water inlet as these fish in certain circumstances, can get stuck.

Personality

This species often has a fun and interesting personality.

Description

The females are dark with white spots, while the males are blueish with spots on their backs.

Family description (Ostraciidae)

Boxfish(Ostraciidae) have a unique square shape and a particular way of swimming.
They have a rather special personality, which one quickly comes to love.

Boxfish live typically off a mixture of algae, coral polyps, zooplankton, and in some cases crustaceans.
They are not normally reef safe and when small will require gentle water circulation.

Boxfish can secrete a poison when stressed or if they die, which can in the worst case, kill the contents of a whole aquarium.
Never use the water the fish was transported in.

FishBase

Aquarium trade Yes
Distribution Indo-Pacific and Eastern Pacific: East Africa to the Mexico, north to southern Japan and the Hawaiian Islands, south to New Caledonia and the Tuamoto Islands. The subspecies Ostracion meleagris camurum is found in the Hawaiian Islands and Ostr
English common names Spotted trunkfish, Spotted boxfish, Whitespotted boxfish, Black boxfish, Box, Blue-spotted boxfish
Danish common names Blåplettet kuffertfisk
German common names Weisstüpfel-Kofferfisch, Kofferfisch
Spanish common names Cofre manchado, Pez caja del Pacífico
French common names Coffre pintade

References and further reading

About references

Bob Fenner. The Puffers Called Box-, Cowfishes, family Ostraciidae - Wet Web Media - (English)
Richard Aspinall. 2012. Oddballs for the Marine Aquarium - Tropical Fish Hobbyist - (English)

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

Tags

eats shrimp, eats crab, eats bivalve clams mussels scallops, eats feather duster worm
Just a moment...
Just a moment...