Clown Anemonefish, Amphiprion percula Click to enlarge image
Clown Anemonefish at a depth of 10m, "The Maze", Great Barrier Reef off Port Douglas, Queensland, December 1999. Image: Erik Schlögl
© Erik Schlögl

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    percula
    Genus
    Amphiprion
    Family
    Clown Anemonefish
    Order
    Perciformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    The species grows to 8 cm in length.

Introduction

The Clown Anemonefish was brought to international stardom in the Pixar animated film Finding Nemo. It occurs in tropical marine waters of Melanesia and Queensland feeding on algae and zooplankton.

Identification

The Clown Anemonefish can be recognised by its orange colour with three white bars (the middle bar usually has a rounded bulge anteriorly) and black markings on the fins.



Habitat

It usually lives in the tentacles of two species of sea anemone. In sheltered inshore reefs it lives in Stichodactyla gigantea, and on outer reefs it usually lives in Heteractis magnifica.

The Clown Anemonefish is found in depths from 1 m to 12 m.

Distribution

It occurs in tropical marine waters of Melanesia and Queensland. In Australia it is known from the entire length of the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland.

The similar species, the False-Clown Anemonefish, Amphiprion ocellaris, is known from the north-western coast of Western Australia and the Northern Territory but not from the Great Barrier Reef.

The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Click on the map for detailed information. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.



Feeding and diet

It feeds on algae and zooplankton.

References

  1. Allen, G.R. 1993. Reef Fishes of New Guinea. A Field Guide for Divers, Anglers and Naturalists. Christensen Research Institute. No. 8. Pp. 132.
  2. Allen, G.R. & R. Swainston. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A Field Guide for Anglers and Divers. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 201.
  3. Kuiter, R.H. & H. Debelius. 1994. south-east Asia. Tropical Fish Guide. IKAN-Unterwasserarchiv. Pp. 321.
  4. Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
  5. Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R & R.C. Steene. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Crawford House Press. Pp. 507.