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Unlike many of its butterflyfish relatives, Klein’s butterflyfish Chaetodon kleinii readily accepts
standard aquarium fare.
Though I would agree that,
generally speaking, the
butterflyfishes do not make
a good starting point for the
beginner saltwater aquarist, there are a
few noteworthy exceptions to this rule
that come to mind. One is the schooling
bannerfish Heniochus diphreutes, which
is quite hardy and bold—not to mention
visually stunning with its Moorish-idol-esque dorsal filament. This species, which
reaches approximately 7 inches in length,
can even be kept in groups in a large
enough system, provided all the specimens
are introduced simultaneously. Another
relatively bulletproof species is Klein’s
butterflyfish Chaetodon kleinii, which
tops out at about 5 inches and is more
classically butterflyfish-like in appearance
than H. diphreutes.
Both of these fishes will thrive on frequent,
varied feedings of meaty marine foods,
such as mysid shrimp, chopped shrimp,
chopped clams, and frozen butterflyfish
formulations. I would recommend adding
them to a mature system with lots of
foraging opportunities provided by quality
live rock rather than a sterile system that
has just been set up.
Would it be possible to keep a scarlet
cleaner shrimp in a tank containing fishes
that are known to eat crustaceans, such
as triggerfishes, groupers, and lionfishes?
Would the fish leave the shrimp alone
because they recognize it as a cleaner, or
would they be more likely to eat it?
I would recommend avoiding
such a combination, as it’s more
likely that the fish will consider
the cleaner shrimp a menu item.
Though large predatory fishes, including
species known to munch on crustaceans, will