Care Level: Easy
Reef Compatible: No
General Description: The Paddlefin Wrasse, also referred to as the Rainbow Wrasse or Cortez Wrasse, is distributed across the eastern Pacific Ocean from the gulf of California to the Galapagos Islands. Juvenile or female Paddlefin wrasses have a dark horizontal stripe through the middle of their body accompanied by a yellow stripe on either side. Male Paddlefin wrasses will have a blue-green face, yellow saddle and red-maroon posterior end. A relatively hardy, inexpensive, and easy fish to care for, the Paddlefin wrasse can be quite aggressive [even as juveniles] and are very active, requiring an open water column for swimming space. This species has been observed to bury in the sand if felt threatened, or even at night. An adult Paddlefin wrasse can reach a size of approximately 8″.
Diet Requirements: Paddlefin wrasses are carnivores. A diet consisting of various meaty preparations such as brine shrimp, mysis shrimp, mussels, clams, krill, squid and other large chunks of frozen food (with some that contain algae, such as spirulina) will maintain optimal health and coloration. We highly encourage soaking frozen foods in vitamin and fatty acid supplements, as wrasses have very high metabolisms. Paddlefin wrasses will also accept high quality flake or pellet foods, which is great for nutritional gaps and variety.
Care Requirements: An established, minimum 125 gallon aquarium is ideal for a Paddlefin wrasse. A tight fitting lid is a must because these wrasses are known to jump out of aquariums. While a Paddlefin wrasse will appreciate some rock work, they also require a lot of unobstructed, open swimming space given their activity level. Paddlefin wrasses are not reef safe because they will eat clean-up crew invertebrates and likely harass small fishes typical of reef aquariums. A Paddlefin wrasse would make an excellent addition to a fish only with live rock aquarium, and other tank mates that match its energetic and somewhat aggressive disposition such as triggerfish, pufferfish, larger angelfish, and tangs. Recommended water conditions, 72-78° F, KH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, salinity 1.020-1.025.
Purchase Size: Small: 1-1/2″ to 3″; Medium: 3-1/4″ to 4″; Large: 4-1/4″ to 6″
Note: Your item may not look identical to the image provided due to variation within species. Purchase sizes are approximate.