Facts

Latin name Rhabdamia gracilis - (Bleeker, 1856)
Common name Luminous cardinalfish
Family Apogonidae - Rhabdamia
Origin East Indian Ocean, West Indian Ocean, Australia, Japan, The Red Sea, Indonesia, Central/West Pacific
Max length 6.0 cm (2.4")

As aquarium fish

Minimum volume 200 l (53 gal)
Hardiness Average
Suitable for aquarium Suitable for most aquarium
Reef safe Always reef safe
Aggressiveness Docile

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.

Docile

This species is very shy and docile, so one should be careful when keeping it with more aggressive fish.

Hiding places

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

Best in a shoal

These fish thrive best in a large or small shoal.

Genus description (Rhabdamia)

The species in the Rhabdamia genus have transparent bodies and bioluminescent organs.

They can be held in large shroals in captivity, but they are valnerable to being eaten by other fish.

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 Rarely
Distribution Indo-West Pacific: East Africa to the Marshall Islands and New Guinea, north to Japan (Ref. 559), south to northern Australia, including the Arafura Sea (Ref. 9819).
English common names Slender cardinalfish, Luminous cardinalfish

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

docile shy, shoal group, cardinal
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