Hemitaurichthys polylepis

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Common Name
Pyramid Butterflyfish
Binomial Name
Hemitaurichthys polylepis
Hemitaurichthys polylepis 1 .JPG
Scientific Classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Family: Chaetodontidae
Genus: Hemitaurichthys
Species: polylepis


Common Names

  • Pyramid Butterflyfish
  • Yellow Pyramid Butterfly



Characteristics

Description

This hardy fish gets its name from a large white, roughly triangular, marking, which is contrasted against a bright yellow background. Face darkens with increasing maturity. Unlike others in this family, they are true planktivores which makes them well suited to reef tanks.

Similar Species

H. zoster is the Indian Ocean counterpart, and has a muted black brown that replaces the yellow markings on H. Polylepsis.

Maximum Size

18cm wild[1].

Associated Organisms

None.

Behaviour

This open water swimmer is a passive planktivore that shoals in the wild to feed on currents of zooplankton. For this reason multiple small feedings are preferable, and aggressive tankmates should be avoided.



Captive Care

Tank Size

Optimum tank size will depend on many variables. However, 4 x 2 x 2 is a good minimum, since the fish grows large and ideally should be kept in small groups.

Water Flow

moderate

Lighting

moderate

Feeding

Small frequent meals are preferred and assorted frozen food should be offered at least twice daily. Live brine shrimp and blackworms may help if the fish is initially reluctant to eat.

Growth Rate

How quickly it will grow under various conditions.

Diseases

Though hardy once acclimated this is still a butterfly and is vulnerable to ectoparasites, gill flukes and bacterial infections.

Other

Addition things / items that are important for care in captivity.



Gallery



Compatability

Fish

May not be compatible with H. zoster in smaller aquariums [2] and may be territorial with smaller butterflys. Ideally the fish should be placed in the display before tangs and other bold feeders. Aggressive feeders may intimidate the fish.

Coral

Coral safe.

Invertebrate

Reef safe.



Reproduction

How it reproduces, how suitable it is to breeding or captive propagation, techniques on how to etc.



Local Ecology

Distribution

Pacific Ocean, east to the Pitcairne Islands, north to Japan and the Hawaiian Islands and south to New Caledonia[3]

Habitat

Found shoaling several meters above reefs on outer reef slopes[1],waiting for currents to bring zooplankton.



Additional Information

Some additional notes on it that don't fit in the above sections.



Resources



References

  1. 1.0 1.1 (http://www.fishbase.org): Froese, R., Pauly, D. Fish Base, World Wide Web electronic publication, 2008, Retrieved: 26 January 2011.
  2. (http://www.manhattanreefs.com/forum/reefs-magazine/78104-reef-safe-butterflyfishes-matt-wandell.html): Wandell, M., Reef Safe Butterflyfishes?, Reefs Magazine, 2010.
  3. (Michael 2004): Michael, S., Angelfishes and Butterflyfishes: Reef Fishes Series, book 3, TFH-Microcosm: Neptune City, 2004.