Spinecheek AnemonefishPhotos, Pictures, Prints

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Premnas biaculeatus

Premnas biaculeatus, the spine-cheeked anemonefish or maroon clownfish, is a species of anemonefish that lives in the Indo-Pacific. They range from western Indonesia to Taiwan and the Great Barrier Reef.

This fish displays a stereotypical spine on the cheek. Its colors and bars vary according to sex and geographic location. Despite the common name maroon clownfish, only some females have a maroon body color. Meanwhile, juveniles and males are bright red-orange.

Like all anemonefishes, this species forms a symbiotic relationship with the sea anemone. This is possible because anemonefish are unaffected by the anemone’s stinging tentacles.

This fish is also a hermaphrodite. It displays a strict, sized-based dominance hierarchy. That is, the female is largest, and the breeding male is second largest. Meanwhile, male non-breeders get progressively smaller as the hierarchy descends. However, the breeding male will change to female if the sole breeding female dies. Then, the largest non-breeder becomes the breeding male.

These colorful fish eat a diet largely consisting of zooplankton.

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