Tank Raised Clownfish

A Brief Overview

When it comes to captive breeding, there has still been relatively little success when compared to breeding freshwater fish. This is due, in large part, to the significantly more complex life cycle of marine fish in which most species will hatch from eggs into what is known as a pelagic larval stage. During this phase, the fish larvae are almost completely helpless, floating in the current and eating whatever microorganisms happen to pass closely enough for them to grab. Replicating the precise conditions that allow these larvae to survive until they are ready to settle to the bottom and metamorphose into their final form is often still a challenge that, for many fish, nobody knows the solution for. However, in recent years there have been several notable breakthroughs in the culture of marine organisms, and perhaps none of these are as impressive as the proliferation of captive bred clownfish.

Along with the success in producing captive bred clownfish, a wide range of genetic traits have emerged and been developed. The number of clownfish variants is already quite large and is growing steadily. Segrest Farms readily offers more than two dozen clownfish variants, and there are a number more that we don't carry for a variety of reasons. These numbers start to challenge even the variety of some types of livebearers, and it is not difficult to understand why clownfish have been referred to more than once as "the guppy of the marine world."

The species with the widest variety of traits being bred is by far the Ocellaris Clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris). A. ocellaris is the source for a number of variants such as the Black, Black Ice, Snowflake, Chilled Frostbite, Wyoming White, Naked, Domino, and more. The closely related Percula Clownfish (Amphiprion percula) also is represented by a fair number of varieties including the Platinum and the Picassos. There is also the Extreme Snow Onyx, which is a hybrid of A. ocellaris and A. percula.

While the Ocellaris and Percula Clowns make up the majority of the available tank raised clownfish, they are by no means the only species being produced. A number of other species including Premnas biaculeatus, Amphiprion melanopus, Amphiprion rubrocinctus, Amphiprion polymnus, and several others are also being bred. Some of these are currently only available in their natural form while other have multiple variants being bred.

Every marine fish that is captive bred is a triumph over the challenges inherently present. While there are many more hurdles to overcome before we reach the same level of success in captive breeding that has already been realized by the freshwater fish world, clownfish stand out as a shining example of the potential that exists. Check out the slideshow above to view some of the clownfish varieties we offer.