Anything worth doing is worth doing right. Designing and maintaining a home aquarium is no different.
If you’re an enthusiast, you know that different fishes and sea critters have special requirements. The Mandarin Dragonet is one of the most beautiful and eye-catching fish you could have. However, it is known to be one of the more finicky ones.
Today, we’re going to learn how to care for these ‘little dragons’ of the sea. Keep reading for the ultimate guide on caring for dragonets.
One Splendid Fish
Also known as the mandarinfish, Synchiropus splendidus are native to the Pacific Ocean.
They dazzle with their bright colors and unique patterns. At a maximum length of three inches, they are quite small.
The first step is to acquire a suitable tank set-up for your dragonet. They need a saltwater tank that holds at least 30 gallons.
You are going to want to have plenty of live rocks and other hiding spaces for it to thrive. Try to recreate the reefs and shallow lagoons where they live.
Don’t forget that they are used to the milder water of the Western Pacific. The proper temperature is between 73-77 degrees Fahrenheit.
The water should be alkaline with a salinity between 1.023 and 1.023. Have a fan on a lower setting to create steady movement.
Finally, your dragonet will appreciate some aquarium lights.
Dragonets may be little, but they live up to their name. Make no mistake. They are ferocious carnivores of the sea.
In the wild, they hunt the tiny crustaceans and other small wildlife that live in and around the sand. Their diet consists mostly of copepods, fish eggs, bristle worms, and other marine critters.
They are notorious for being fussy eaters. Getting them to eat frozen shrimp bits and/or pellets can be difficult.
More than anything, your dragonet craves live copepods. If you must go frozen, be patient and gradually change the food over several days to weeks. Just make sure you thaw out their meals first.
They will eat two or three times a day. If it takes more than two minutes to eat the meal, you are giving it too much.
You now have everything you need to begin. Be sure to check the water’s appearance, temperature, and gravity every day.
10-25% of the tank water should be changed at least once a month.
With the right conditions, the Mandarin Dragonet lifespan is up to four years in an aquarium.
Your First Mandarin Dragonet
As you can see, the Mandarin Dragonet isn’t any old fish you can leave in a bowl and hope for the best.
Although requires special care and attention, it is arguably one of the most beautiful fish in the world. Impress your guests with this rare and vibrant fish.
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