- Group: Saltwater
- Size: Medium
- Temperament: Aggressive
- Aquarium Size: Large (50 gal)
- Swimming Region(s): All
- Suitable Tank Mates: Large Angelfish, Boxfish, Rabbitfish, Puffers and Tangs
- Difficulty Of Care: Weekly care
Scorpionfish are a large family of marine fish comprised of over a 100 different species. They are characterized by their short, bulky bodies and defensive spines which extend from their pectoral, dorsal and anal fins. They are counted among some of the most poisonous animals in the world and extreme care should be taken when raising them in the aquarium. The sting from some species can be lethal to human beings. Their dangerous nature aside, they are prized in the aquarium trade for their beauty and fascinating behavior. However, they should only be kept by experienced aquarists.
Scorpionfish are a large family of marine fish comprised of over a 100 different species.
Scorpionfish originate in the tropical and temperate reefs around the world.
Scorpionfish are famous for their vibrant colorations and complex markings. They often come in shades of red, orange, yellow, tan, brown, grey and white.
Maintenance and care
One of the reasons that scorpionfish are so popular among aquarists is that they are an extremely hardy species of fish. They adapt very well to life in the aquarium and are extremely disease resistant. However, due to their highly dangerous nature, they are not recommended as pets for novice aquarists.
Scorpionfish are a predatory species and should not be housed with smaller species of fish. In the wild they lie motionless amongst rocks and corals, waiting for unsuspecting prey to cross their paths. It is best to mimic this natural habitat in the aquarium with a soft sandy substrate and plenty of rocks and hiding places.
While not a significantly large species of fish, scorpionfish do require fairly large aquariums to thrive in. If kept in smaller aquariums, they can sometimes unintentionally injure their tank mates with their venomous spines. Scorpionfish are a relatively peaceful species of fish and do best when kept in small groups.
One of the reasons that scorpionfish are so popular among aquarists is that they are an extremely hardy species of fish.
Scorpionfish are carnivores and should be fed on a meaty diet of fish, shrimp, squid and other crustaceans. If a scorpionfish is reluctant to accept frozen foods, the aquarist can wiggle the food in front of the scorpionfish using a long stick to stimulate its predatory instincts.
There are no reports of successful scorpionfish successfully spawning in the home aquarium.
Reef Scorpionfish, Red Barbfish, Cheekspot Scorpionfish, Leaffish, etc.
Photo credit: Matt The Ogre/Flickr; Ellis Parsonage/Flickr