Pictichromis porphyrea
Source: JJPhoto.dk
Pictichromis porphyrea
Source: JJPhoto.dk

Facts

Latin name Pictichromis porphyrea - (Lubbock & Goldman, 1974)
Common name Magenta dottyback
Family Pseudochromidae - Pictichromis
Origin Australia, Indonesia, East Pacific, Central/West Pacific
Max length 6.0 cm (2.4")

As aquarium fish

Minimum volume 70 l (18 gal)
Hardiness Hardy
Suitable for aquarium Suitable with care
Reef safe Reef safe with caution
Aggressiveness Aggressive towards other species

Food

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

Jumps out of open aquaria

This species is known to jump out of open aquaria.

Aggressive

This species can be extremely aggressive towards other fish.

Be careful when keeping these fish together with peaceful or docile species. Regular feeding, plenty of hiding places and a lot of space can alleviate aggressive behavior to some degree.

Threat towards crustaceans

This species poses a threat towards shrimps and crabs etc., which are relatively small.

Requires a varied diet

This species must be fed with an appropriately varied diet.

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.

Hermaphroditic

This species can change gender from female to male.

When a male is needed, a female changes sex and takes on the role.

Bred in captivity

This species can be bred in captivity, one can therefore consider asking your local fish store for a captive bred specimen.

Hiding places

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

Family description (Pseudochromidae)

Dottybacks (Pseudochromidae) are often very colourful, rather hardy and relatively small, typically under 4 inch (10 cm). These fish can be distinguished from other fish by looking at the shape of the eye, see for example the picture of this: Labracinus cyclophthalmus.

They can be quite aggressive towards other fish, if they are kept together with more docile species or if there is not enough space. They are especially aggressive towards fish that resemble themselves or Wrasses, as in the wild, Wrasses will go after their eggs.

If their aggressive behaviour is dealt with, they can be suitable to smaller aquaria. Their aggressive behaivour can be remedied by keeping them together with other aggressive or larger species as for example: Hawkfish, Surgeonfish, Rabbitfish, Angelfish, Triggerfish, Clown/ Damselfish or Pufferfish.

Dottybacks will compete for food with other fish which eat zooplankton off the rocks. Mandarinfish and similar species can find it difficult to get enough food if kept together with Dottybacks.
One could consider the Gramma species, if one wishes a similar fish which is more peaceful.

FishBase

Aquarium trade Yes
Distribution Western Pacific: Philippines to Samoa, north to Ryukyu Islands, south to Moluccas and Admiralty Islands.
English common names Strawberry dottyback, Magenta dottyback

References and further reading

About references

Henry C. Schultz. 2002. The Dottybacks - Reefkeeping - (English)
Scott W. Michael. 2001. Basslets, Dottybacks & Hawkfishes: v. 2 (Reef Fishes) - TFH Publications / Microcosm Ltd. - (English)
Bob Fenner. The Dottybacks, Family Pseudochromidae - Wet Web Media - (English)
Collection of links to additional information - Wet Web Media - (English)

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

Tags

hermaphroditic, aggressive territorial, eats shrimp, eats crab
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