|Latin name||Sargocentron vexillarium - (Poey, 1860)|
|Common name||Dusky squirrelfish|
|Family||Holocentridae - Sargocentron|
|Origin||The Mexican Golf, West Atlantic|
|Max length||18.0 cm (7.1")|
As aquarium fish
Can be a threat to small fish
This spicies might be a threat to smaller fishes.
Can be a threat towards small crustaceans
This species can be a threat towards small crustaceans, e.g. small shrimp.
Take care when catching these fish
These fish should not be caught with a net, as it is all too easy to damage their large eyes.
Low light conditions
This species thrives best in an aquarium with dimmed lighting.
This species is very secretive and will not often be seen out in the open.
This species is nocturnal and therefore the most active when the light is dimmed or turned off.
Hiding amongst stony corals
This species likes to hide in and amongst the branches of corals, e.g. Acropora coral and
will also do well if they can find other hiding places.
Can be aggressive
This species can be aggressive if they are not provided with adequate space.
Overhangs and caves
This species thrives best in an aquarium with overhangs and caves.
Family description (Holocentridae)
Squirrel-/Soldierfish (Holocentrinae and Myripristinae) are normally a red/grey colour and very secretive.
As to how much they hide, varies from fish to fish, what they do have in common however, is that they are most active when the lights are off, but will, with time, come out more while the lights are on.
Squirrel-/Soldierfish are not generally a threat to other aquarium animals, but will sometimes eat very small fish and invertebrates.
Neither Squirrelfish or Soldierfish are particularly aggressive, and whilst most species can be kept in a small group, they will sometimes fight amongst themselves. In this case, space must be taken into consideration as the Squirrelfish will sometimes chase the less aggressive Soldierfish, if space is lacking.
It is easy enough to get both fish types to eat, but if they do not come out during the day it is best to feed them when the lights are off. In the beginning it might be necessary to lure them out with live food.
Squirrelfish have spikes on their head and gills which easily get caught in fishnets, so avoid those.
Being scratched by some species of Squirrelfish can result in an ugly wound and be painful, as some are actually poisonous.
If one is not careful when capturing and transporting these fish, their eyes can be damaged.
|Distribution||Western Atlantic: Bermuda and Florida, USA to northern South America.|
|English common names||Dusky squirrelfish|
|Spanish common names||Carajuelo oscuro, Candil manchado|
References and further reading
Scott W. Michael. 2001. Reef Fishes volume 1 - TFH Publications / Microcosm Ltd. - (English)
Henry C. Schultz. 2003. But They Don't Look Like a Rat with a Fuzzy Tail: The Family Holocentridae - Reefkeeping Magazine - (English)
Bob Fenner. Squirrel- & Soldierfishes, Family Holocentridae - Wet Web Media - (English)
Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2014. FishBase. World Wide Web electronic publication. www.fishbase.org, version (08/2014).
|nocturnal night, eats fish, eats shrimp, docile shy|