*Picture was taken at the national aquarium in Baltimore
Scientific name: Dendrochirus zebra
Common name: Dwarf Zebra Lionfish
Synonyms: Turkey fish, wasp fish and scorpion fish
Size: 7" (18cm)
Note: this is very wide and tall fish with its ray like fins
Minimum Tank Size: 30 gallons
Tank setup: This fish will enjoy numerous hiding places in which to hide and lay in wait of prey.
Temperament: Most of these fish live solitary but they can be found hunting in
packs of five or more. This is a simi-aggressive fish. Lionfish species are nocturnal and often remain inactive until the lights go out.
Compatibility: In general it is not a reef safe fish eating ornamental
shrimp and invertebrates but this fish is safe with corals. It will eat any fish big enough to swallow. These fish can open there mouth extremely wide to eat anything almost equal in length.
Water Type: saltwater
Temperature: 75-80°F (21-27°C)
Specific Gravity: 1.022-1.025
Sexual dimorphism: there is no way to visually sex this fish
Breeding: Lionfish are ovoviviparous meaning that the eggs stay in the female's
body until they hatch ensuring that the eggs are safe. Breeding of lionfish in the home aquaria is very rare though it has occurred.
Feeding: this species is carnivorous and should be feed a verity of seafood including
silver sides, krill, shrimp, prawns. The long, webbed fins of lionfish are used in a hunting practice in which it "fences" its prey into a corner and finally eats it in a single gulp.
Note: feeding live freshwater fish to a lionfish or any other saltwater fish is not healthy in any manner and will lead to an untimely death.
Warning- This fish has venom glands containing neurotoxins in the dorsal, anal and
pelvic fins causing a puncture wound. This is used as a defense mechanism against larger predatory fish. The venom paralyzes muscles including the heart of injected fish. This venom is of lesser danger to humans. A sting from a lionfish may cause a reaction relative to a bee sting but slightly worse. If sting hot water should be run over the wound and medical help should be sought immediately. In sever cases death can occur.