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  1. 1. Damsels The good. The bad. The Ugly. By: Aaron Jodway
  2. 2. What are we going to talk about? <ul><li>Why damsels? </li></ul><ul><li>Why not damsels? </li></ul><ul><li>Choosing a damsel. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Genus </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Species </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Behavioral traits </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tankmates and stocking densities </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Q&A </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why damsels? <ul><li>Availability- These fish are almost always available at any given LFS, at any given time. </li></ul><ul><li>Hardiness- Often regarded as great “starter fish” due to their tolerance of less than ideal tank conditions. </li></ul><ul><li>Visual Impact- As juveniles especially, these are some of the most colorful fish in the hobby; often having interesting patterns as well. </li></ul><ul><li>Price- Often, damsels are the cheapest saltwater fish available at the LFS. </li></ul>
  4. 4. A few examples of the simple beauty of these fish
  5. 7. Why not damsels? <ul><li>“ Starter fish” syndrome- More times than not, new hobbyists are sold damsels to cycle their new tank with. </li></ul><ul><li>Aggressiveness- Many species of damsels can become VERY territorial once settled in their new home. </li></ul><ul><li>Mature coloration- Unbeknownst to many new hobbyists, that cute, colorful fish will eventually be a big, dull looking monster; some of which can reach 7-8” in size, or more! </li></ul>
  6. 11. Taxonomy <ul><li>Kingdom Animalia   -- Animal     </li></ul><ul><li>Phylum Chordata   -- chordates       </li></ul><ul><li>Subphylum Vertebrata   -- vertebrates            </li></ul><ul><li>Superclass Osteichthyes   -- bony fishes </li></ul><ul><li>Class Actinopterygii   -- ray-finned fishes </li></ul><ul><li>Subclass Neopterygii   -- neopterygians                     </li></ul><ul><li>Infraclass Teleostei                           </li></ul><ul><li>Superorder Acanthopterygii                              </li></ul><ul><li>Order Perciformes   -- perch-like fishes                              </li></ul><ul><li>Suborder Labroidei   -- labres, parrotfishes, poissons-perroquets, rainbowfishes, wrasses                                </li></ul><ul><li>Family Pomacentridae   -- damselfishes, demoiselles, sergents </li></ul>
  7. 12. Choosing a damsel <ul><li>Popular Genus’ </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Abudefduf </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Chrysiptera </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Chromis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dascyllus </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Neoglyphidodon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pomacentrus </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Stegastes </li></ul></ul>
  8. 13. Abudefduf sp. The “Sergeant major” damsels <ul><li>Characterized by several dark/black vertical markings along the body </li></ul><ul><li>Can reach 5-8” as adults </li></ul>
  9. 14. Chrysiptera sp. <ul><li>Generally regarded as one of the most readily available genus of damsels </li></ul><ul><li>Typical colors are a mixture of bright blue and/or yellow </li></ul><ul><li>Most species stay relatively small at or under 3” in length </li></ul><ul><li>Generally good community fish, although they may fight with conspecifics. </li></ul>
  10. 16. Chromis sp <ul><li>Also readily available and very popular. </li></ul><ul><li>Generally peaceful towards tankmates. </li></ul><ul><li>Will shoal in a group, given enough space. </li></ul><ul><li>Over time, they usually start picking each other off until only one remains. </li></ul><ul><li>Those who make it to maturity, stay fairly small at 3” on average. </li></ul><ul><li>A little known fact is that there are around 80 species known to belong to this genus! </li></ul>
  11. 19. Dascyllus sp. <ul><li>Often available and very hardy. </li></ul><ul><li>Generally characterized by having a taller, more square profile than other damsels. </li></ul><ul><li>Generally black and/or white in color. </li></ul><ul><li>Some of the more aggressive damsels available in the hobby </li></ul>
  12. 23. Neoglyphidodon sp <ul><li>Often very colorful as juveniles. </li></ul><ul><li>Big, ugly, and mean as adults reaching 4 to 6” in size </li></ul>
  13. 25. Pomacentrus sp. <ul><li>Similar to Chrysiptera sp. in both form and function. </li></ul><ul><li>Many species make good tank mates and stay relatively small. </li></ul><ul><li>Varied colorations including blue, black, yellow, red, orange, silver, and green. </li></ul>
  14. 28. Stegastes sp. The “Beau Gregory” damsels <ul><li>Generally quite colorful as juveniles. </li></ul><ul><li>Another overly aggressive genus, similar to Dascyllus sp. </li></ul><ul><li>Often big, mean, and ugly when mature. </li></ul>
  15. 31. Tankmates and stocking densities <ul><li>Generally speaking, no less than 20g-25g per damsel </li></ul><ul><li>Tankmates should be “robust” enough to hold their own in a tank with damsels. Some examples are: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tangs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>6-line wrasses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hawkfish </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dottybacks/basslets </li></ul></ul>
  16. 32. Tank decoration <ul><li>Provide lots of caves, crevices, and other hiding places. Many damsels also enjoy making their homes within the branches of SPS colonies. </li></ul><ul><li>Proper tank setup will allow for each damsel to establish a territory and reduce aggression with conspecifics. </li></ul>
  17. 33. Questions?