For a while now I've been trying to decide on my last fish additions for this tank, I wanted something small, peaceful and reef safe, oh and would swim out in the open most of the time. That couldn't be hard, could it? In actual fact finding something that fits all those criteria was surprisingly difficult. I researched loads and visited more than a few shops checking out what was on offer. It soon became clear to me that there wasn't actually that much choice really, the small fish category is not well represented at any of my LFS or indeed any of my not-so-local fish shops either.
In the end after much wavering, I decided to take a bit of a risk and try a small group of Red Spot Cardinalfish. These fish have a bit of an iffy reputation in captivity, there are a fair few reports of them vanishing/dying for no apparent reason at all. If the feedback were all negative then I wouldn't have considered them at all but along with the bad there are also reports of success and some even having them breeding. I hope my experience of them will be the latter.
At the LFS I asked for five individuals (I've heard that odd numbers work better than even, I have no idea where that recommendation originated) but in the end I came away with six fish. The very nice salesman added an extra to my bag for free, who was I to say no to that?
They were introduced to the tank late on Saturday afternoon and I must say that they've really brought it to life, they are always out in the open and haven't hidden away once. Even the wrasses have more confidence now and are out and about a lot more which is lovely. They appear to be eating well although it's hard to know if they all are getting their fair share. I was advised to offer them smaller foods but they seem keen to take bigger items too. So far they have eaten cyclops, calanus, lobster eggs, enriched brineshrimp and PE mysis. I can understand how these fish may fade away if not fed enough as they are always on the go, never taking a rest even at night. I hope that I can keep up with their dietary requirements without polluting the tank at the same time.
Some say that these fish are boring and ugly but I would strongly disagree, they are delicate and subtly coloured. Do they look like a fresh water tetra? Well yes, they kind of do but they work for me and have fitted in to my tank without issue (...so far).
Hi, my name is Lisa and I live in Derby, UK. I am a self-confessed reefaholic!