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Red Spotted Blenny

Istiblennius chrysospilos

How to Care for Red Spotted Blenny

written by Dave Burr

Behavior: The Red Spotted Blenny requires an established reef with plenty of live macro algae growing. It does not usually eat hair or string algae. Although it may occasionally nip at select clams and SPS corals, the Red Spotted Blenny rarely causes any real damage to corals or invertebrates. Providing plenty of live rock with microalgae for it to graze on should keep it pre-occupied and its belly full.

The Red Spotted Blenny is an interesting reef fish that will spend much of its time perched on corals or rocks. It is generally a peaceful fish, however it may behave aggressively towards smaller blennies. They are best kept singly unless a pair is added to a larger reef aquarium of 200 gallons or more.

Feeding: The Red Spotted Blenny requires an established reef aquarium with plenty of live macro algae growing in it. You can supplement its diet with live macro algae, such as Macro Feast, 1-2 times per week. Try using a rubber-band to attach the algae to a small rock or pvc pipe and place it in the sand bed.

Rubber-banding algae to bit of tonga branch rock looks the most natural and will stay in place the best.

Soaking all fish food (even algae) with vitamins will help keep your fish healthier and make them less susceptible to disease. We recommend soaking food in garlic as well when adding new fish and whenever your notice ich or other disease in the aquarium. Garlic will help repel external parasites and will boost the fishes immunity.

Feeding Tips: Remember to feed slowly. Leftover food will cause nitrates and phosphates to rise. If you see food falling to the sand bed and into the rocks, you should feed slower and give the fish a chance to eat before adding a little more. Using a turkey baster allows you to target food to different fish. For example you can feed the aggressive fish on one side of the tank and then squirt a little bit on the other side for the less aggressive fish. This way all the fish get a chance to eat enough.

Maximum Length: 5"
Care Level: Moderate
Family: Blenniidae
Reef Compatibility: Yes
Minimum Aquarium Size: 120 gal.
Range: Fiji, Indian Ocean
Diet: Herbivore
Water Conditions: 75-80° F; sg 1.024-1.026 (1.025 is ideal); pH 8.1-8.4 Ca 420-440 ppm, Alk 8-9.5 dKH, Mg 1260-1350, Nitrates <10ppm, Phosphates, < .10ppm

Water Chemistry: Maintaining Ammonia at 0 ppm, Nitrites at 0 ppm, and Nitrates below 10ppm will help to keep your Red Spotted Blenny happy and healthy. We recommend doing a water change soon after Nitrates rise above 10 ppm. Maintaining proper calcium (420-440 ppm), alkalinity (8-9.5 dkh - run it 7-8 if you are carbon dosing), and magnesium levels (1260-1350 ppm) will help to keep pH stable in the 8.1-8.4 range. We recommend a specific gravity of 1.024-1.026 with 1.025 being ideal for fish. Temperature should remain stable as well and should stay within a 2 degree range.