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FAQs about the Clownfish Identification 2

FAQs on: Clownfish Identification 1, Clownfish Identification 3, Clownfish Identification 4,
Related FAQs: Clownfishes 1, Clownfishes 2, Clownfishes 3, Clownfish Selection, Clownfish Compatibility, Clownfish Behavior, Clownfish Systems, Clownfish Feeding, Maroon Clownfish, Clownfish Diseases I & Clownfish Diseases 2Clownfish Diseases 3, Brooklynellosis, Anemones & Clownfishes, Breeding Clowns

Related Articles: ClownfishesBrooklynellosis

Aquacultured Clowns from Thailand     6/1/13
 Take a close look at these clowns bred by the Thailand aquaculture authority and let me know what you think.
 <Percularis... cross twixt A. percula and A. ocellaris. Appear to be in very good condition. B>

Re: Aquacultured Clowns from Thailand     6/1/13
I was wondering why they bother breeding hybrids. Do they do better in aquariums?
<Some do... this one is very hardy. B>

Common Ocellaris or Percula?     4/26/13
I'm having a hard time identifying my new tank members. The LFS called them Ocellaris. I'm not so sure they're right.
<I'd label this fish as a Percula... but it might be a cross... a Percularis so to speak>
These fish seem a bit darker with thicker lines.
They don't hold still enough for me to count spines, and that's if they even put them up!!!!
Thanks so much.
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Confirming Identification of Clown     9/7/12
Hello All,
<Hi Tom>
I am a long-time freshwater hobbyist (Malawi cichlids) and have recently converted my 55 gal to a FOWLR.
 Have been enjoying and gleaning all kinds of information from your site.  Keep up the good work!  To my question, I recently purchased two juvenile "maroon clowns" from my LFS.
<Beautiful but aggressive.>
  After doing some more research on your site and a few others I am pretty confident that what I have are actually two black & white ocellaris.
<Somewhat difficult to confuse the two.>
 Mainly I see no cheek spine on either and coloration and the forward bulging middle band match what I have seen for identification of the b&w.  I attached a pic of one of them and was hoping to defer to your expertise to confirm identification.
<You are correct on all points. I would think twice before taking any sort of advice from said LFS. I'm at a loss as to how they could mistake your clown for a Premnas>

Re: Confirming Identification of Clown 9/7/12  9/9/12
Thanks for such the quick response and confirmation. I didn't plan to get maroons going in and was not familiar with their characteristics but they were the most active/healthy looking out of the various clowns the LFS had.
After doing my research (a little late!) on the maroons I am glad they are not what they were labeled. Guess I lucked out as the green Chromis in my main tank prob would not have liked their new neighbors.
<A little luck goes a long way.>
Thanks again,
Tom Myers

Just looking for an identification – 07/26/12
Is the clown Sebae or Bicinctus?
<I think the latter. See here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/clownfis.htm
  Picture was taken in Fiji is why I ask.  I have owned a Bicinctus and they look very close.  The mid body bar is narrower on the Bi.  The body is rounder on the Bi.
[frmReadMail_Attachment.aspx?folder=Inbox&uid=90411&partid=4&filename=image001.jpg&user=crew&mapped=False ]
Kind Regards,
Erik Hayes
<Cheers, Bob Fenner>

<<Erik... summat kept bugging me re this image/Fiji... got on the Net, took a look under Fishbase for A. bicinctus... NOT found in Fiji (search under Island/Country... And having dived the islands there a few times over decades... NOW think this is actually A. chrysopterus... Sheesh! And sorry re. BobF>>
 Re: Just looking for an identification – 07/26/12

Thanks Bob.  What the heck is it doing in Fiji?  I thought they were only in the Red Sea.
<!? Of all the... just sent you a note/correction re... A trip this AM to the Birch AQ/SIO gave me the "whack" I needed this AM... and perhaps mas cafe! Cheers! B>
Re: Just looking for an identification – 07/26/12

Thank Bob.
Erik Hayes
<Welcome... amazing; you'd think (I do) that after collecting so many too-large Clowns from FJ that I'd be able to tell... Cheers, B>

Clownfish I.D.   12/27/11
This clownfish was sold to us as a Picasso Clarkii in Phoenix, Az.
<... what's in a name?>
The retailer took it in as a trade so I am unable to track down any info on the lineage or original purchase info. Picasso Clarkii's aren't exactly available, so I am curious about the identity of this clown. I have already asked ORA if this could be one of their 'Spotcinctus' variants and they were unable to confirm, stating they thought it may be a Bicinctus/Clarkii hybrid.
<Could be>
 I plan on adding this clown to our broodstock and would like to have a better idea of what species or possible hybrid/variant he may be and a suitable mate for him. Any ideas or educated opinions would be very helpful. The more I search, the more questions I have.
Thank You,
Tosh @ The Clown Factory 
<Mmm, your pix are too small, only a handful of Kbytes per... Need one well-resolved image of moderate size to be surer... However, the only real way to be assured of the genetic make-up of this specimen is DNA analysis... not hard, or expensive. Bob Fenner>
The Clown Factory

Full size pic.

Clarkii? ID and Name of Mutation   2/27/11
Hello Crew!
Thanks, in advance, for your expertise.
I have acquired a pair of clowns, and I'm not sure what kind they are, but I believe them to be Clarkii. I have never owned Clarkii before.
The questions are: Can you tell me if the Female's mis-bar is normal mis-bar or if it's a mutation? The ring and looped stripe, to me, looks very unusual.
<Mmm, well, this species of Clown has the widest range of natural colour and barring... this one is unusual still>
What would you call this mutation?
Are these indeed Clarkii? I have searched the site.
<I do think they are>
Is this a common mutation or more of a rare one or is it a mutation at all?
<Not too uncommon>
They are a mated pair, brought to our local shop today, and I couldn't resist them. I got them to host my Sebae and they went right in. It is H. Crispa.
The purple one from earlier this month which Bob had fun IDing with me. :)
Thank you in advance once again, for your expertise.
<Thank you for sharing. BobF> 


Amphiprion perideraion nee pacificus Allen, Drew & Fenner, 2010, another "new" species from the Central Pacific. This one in Fiji.

Bigger PIX:
The images in this table are linked to large (desktop size) copies. Click on "framed" images to go to the larger size.

Amphiprion pacificus, mis-id'ed  2/12/11
I am pretty sure the pictures you have on the following page are not of Amphiprion pacificus.
I have attached the original description to this email and you can see that the pictures in the description do not have the face stripe like the pictures you currently have.
<I do see the absence of the vertical>
I believe the pictures you currently have are of the Tangerine Skunk, which is currently considered a variant of Amphiprion perideraion*.*
Thank you,
<Thank you. Will correct. BobF, abashed>

Re: Identification, naming Clownfish sports, Percularis repro.!    2/7/11
Hi there everyone at WWM !
<Hey Mich!>
This is just a follow up... we all type our "problems in need of solutions"  to you, lol.. so I thought it would be nice to share a happy follow up. Here is the latest video to my "Percularis" babies :)
<Neato! I esp. like the piano accompaniment>
As from what Mr. Fenner stated in previous email - that the young dying (may) be related to the cross of the ocellaris /percula.... here are the details thus far....
Total larvae caught night of hatching: 22 (this clutch was a small one)
Had 16 for quite awhile :)
Now - I have "9" happy baby clownfish, 17 days old today, I am very pleased with this being my first successful batch, and the fact that Mr. Fenner feels the survival rate may be affected by the type of breed so to speak... then I am very happy to have 9 survive thus far :)
They are on Otohime A dry food - only. I will introduce the Cyclops-Eeze when possibly a bit older, don't want to 'jinx' my luck.
Just felt like sharing, as he was the one who gave his thought on the type they were, and everyone who has heard this has sided with his guess as well.... so Thank You Bob :) I will be calling my Mamma & Pappa Clowns "Percularis" from now on :)
(also recently picked up a pair of baby Picassos..... so will be breeding them when they decide they are ready :) just curious, as they are not "graded" ...purchased them from a LFS who did not know the grade, and contacted the supplier themselves.. not able to tell the grade... so how would I go about having this done when they get old enough to breed? Is it the black lining/patterns that determine the grade? )
<I don't know... maybe give a ring/email to the fine folks at C-Quest and/or ORA re>
Have a great day everyone- again your efforts are appreciated -keep up the good work!
Michelle Yingst
<Thanks; we're trying! BobF>
Re: Identification   2/7/11
Re: Picassos-Cool- will do .... have a Facebook friend from ORA I recently acquired- will send him a few pics.
(these were purchased from Proquatics by one of the LFS)
<Ahh, both good outfits in my estimation>
Re: the baby Percularis - Thank you again- hope to send another follow up in about 6 months, lol...of happy healthy juveniles :)
<Please do>
Have a great evening :) Stay Happy & Healthy :)
<And you. BobF>
Re: Identification   2/8/11
Ok- came across this on YouTube... question for the experts, lol:
What exactly is a Fudge Glazed Clownfish?
<Yummy, sounds delicious!>
This looks similar to what I have.... (my Percularis).... is Fudge Glazed basically just a name someone came up with for their 'own' fish? Or is this an actual name that you know of, like as in platinums... nakeds... etc?
<Exactly... these names are "made up"...>
Haha.. I kind of like the name ...but curious if it is real 'in the clownfish world' , lol
<There is only one Clownfish world... the human part is, as usual, simply attempts at successive approximation to the truth of it. Cheers, B>
Re: Identification, Clowns   2/8/11

Thank you again- as usual you are quick to reply, much thanks :)
I may think on the name in the future, lol...depending on how the babies look :)
But as far as keeping records for when I apply for my aquaculture license...I think I shall stick with Percularis... simple...to the point... basic... like nature :)
<And us. B>
Re: Identification   2/27/11

Good evening to all !
Just wanted to drop a line, to thank you again for the input on the previous messages.
<Ah good>
My Percularis babies are now 36 Days Old today (soooo happy about this!)
Unfortunately, of the 9 that had survived..... I am now down to only 6. But they are very strong swimmers, and seem to be good eaters.
So cute the way they smooch their little faces to the front of the glass when you walk up to the tank- they know it's feeding time, lol!
Anyway- just wanted to include a pic I took of them this evening for a friend on Facebook (Rod's Foods ) - and wanted to share with you as well.
<Mmm, no pic attached>
I am still feeding Otohime A only- but will be introducing Cyclopeeze in a week or two... to see their reaction to it. Not wanting to press my luck
Have a great weekend.
<Cheers! BobF> 

clownfish ID    1/2/11
Hello again. Picked these up at the local fish store as a mated pair.
They sold them as Dark Iron clowns but I can't find any info on the web for this name. Can you let me know what the real name is?
<Real? See here: http://wetwebmedia.com/clownfis.htm>
I love them and hopefully they will mate for me.
Thanks in advance!
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Re: clownfish, ID   1/3/11
Thanks for the info. What I meant by "real" was what kind of clown they were. Thanks again.
<Both scientific and common names are posted where you were referred to. B>

Identification, Clns.   1/1/11
Hello there (love you guys)
I am in need of your assistance / expertise please.
I am in the process of raising clownfish (still have the training wheels on, learning as I go.)
Just had a large batch hatch on 12/30/2010, several feedings of rotifers throughout the day on 12/31/2010,
and when I tried adding a tiny, tiny bit of probiotics to the rotifers (
http://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/content.php?sid=2737 )
I went back for the next feeding and the entire batch was gone - all dead.
(have you heard of any good things coming from using probiotics?)
<I have not. Frightening... don't know what the connection (if any) might be between these acts>
Now for the ID part.... I will try to include a good pic of my pair. I bought them 3 years ago, sold as "Common Ocellaris" - a very small size, maybe an inch each. (originally bought 3 but 1 did not survive the other two). They are now close to 2- 2 1/2 in for the male and maybe over 3" for the female.
I have thought all this time they were just "darker" than others I see in the store, but someone told me that they are NOT Ocellaris, and now I am trying to find out just what they are.
I like to have everything in my records, and if they are something else, I would like to correct my info.
They are mated (of course) - they are darker on the top half of their bodies, with lighter bellies.
The male looks like a cross between the true black onyx and a true percula (www.aquacon.com) his stripes connect and the female looks like she could be a cross between the teardrop and a percula (again www.aquacon.com ) as her bar does not connect and is a teardrop shape- Not sure. When I try to
Google, thousands of photos come up, but no real description of mine.
Any ideas or opinions as to what type they are I would appreciate. Thank you.
Wishing you and the crew a Very Happy New Year!
Michelle Yingst
I can take a quick video and send it if it helps - thanks!
<I do think these fish are crosses... "Percularis"...
Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/clownfis.htm
and that perhaps the young dying is related to this cross. Bob Fenner>

Re: Identification   1/2/11
Mr. Fenner
<Hi Michelle>
For starters - thank you for responding so quickly. Much appreciated.
<Certainly welcome>
So...do you think that the young will ever have a chance? I am determined to master the rearing - and have been following forum members (Tal Sweet www.fishtalpropagations.com ) and Patricia via Facebook (Booyah's Reef) (Sissy McAvoy/Facebook...and a secret unnamed source at ORA...) trying to get advice/tips that are not in Joyce Wilkerson's book, or that of Martin Moe.
<Good sources... and yes... I do know of such apparent crosses producing viable young in turn. The first few "batches" of Clownfish young by new pairs are typically ... fragile. I would not be discourages>
I am hopeful - but you have the experience...do you feel this is something (the cross breeding that is) that is going to continuously cause me stumbling blocks?
<I do not know, but definitely hope not>
In past hatches I was able to get up to the 1st week post hatch... then lost them.
What tricks of the trade do you know of off hand that will get past this hurdle, to see if in fact it is (me and my newbie raising skills) or if it is the mixed breed?
<Look into aspects of water quality, particularly near-seawater strength Spg, AND doing what you can to bolster the health of the breeders, through feeding, supplementing foods>
I appreciate the feedback - and am THRILLED that you were the one to respond, lol - although I love everyone's answers - the WWM is a great source.
Thank you again - have a great evening :)
<Thank you! BobF>

Re: Identification, ID, repro. f's   1/3/11
Thank you again for the reply... I will continue to offer a varied healthy diet to my brood pair, and I will continue to work on the babies... if I have any success, I will send a follow up email. :)
<Thank you>
Here is a quick link to my last hatch...12/30/2010, prior to my adding the probiotics to the rotifers :(
Again, thank you for responding, much appreciated!
Have a great week-
<Thank you Michelle. BobF>

Clownfish ID  12/13/10
Hi guys!
Question here from the Marshall Islands. I know this isn't a strictly aquarium related question, but I was hoping you could help me out real quick. There's this clownfish (I've ID'ed it that far at least :p) that I often see when I go diving. I regularly dive this one spot, and I am sort of curious as to what species this is. I can recognize most clownfish, and I know that Amphiprion clarkii is supposed to stay a bit farther west than the Marshall Islands, but something about this guy (girl I guess with their hermaphroditism)
looks like a clarkii. It's probably just a regular old Amphiprion tricinctus, and I'm used to seeing those, but I was wondering if you could give me an opinion due to the popularity of Clark clownfish in the aquarium world.
<Mmm, need a closer pic, more resolution. Could be a Clark's, three-stripe... even a cross>
I'm sorry that the pic isn't too good, underwater photography isn't my thing yet :(. Anyway, this is on the outer reef slope on Majuro Atoll in the Marshall Islands. The anemone is maybe about 20 feet down. Pics of this clown are kind of hard to come by; it's the only camera-shy clown I've met.
The third stripe (caudal stripe I guess you call it) continues up onto the top of the caudal fin. It doesn't wrap all the way around, just tapers off around the midway point of the tail. The anemone doesn't show up too well, but I'm pretty sure it's a Stichlodactyla or however you spell that genus.
<Is this... S. mertensii>
I've been Googling Clark clownfish and Three-stripe clownfish but there's a lot of obvious mistakes, like pictures of Premnas showing up as Amphiprion :) Poor guys.
Oh yeah, let me know if you guys ever travel through here. Awesome diving around here :)
<Thank you for sending this along Dan. Hope to see you in Majuro. Bob Fenner>

Wrong Anemone for A. sebae

Clownfish ID 9/3/10
I got this clownfish about a week ago and am unsure of what species he is.
The picture isn't the greatest so I will try to give you the best description as I can.
- His nose is yellow, and this yellow coloration extends onto his
and ends at the pectoral fins.
- The pectoral fins have some black at the base but are mostly yellow
- The pelvic and anal fins are black and have some iridescent yellow hues.
- His second stripe extends onto his soft dorsal fin.
- He has a third white stripe at the base of his caudal fin, and this stripe extends to the end of the caudal fin. So the dorsal side of the caudal fin is white, the majority of the fin is black and there is a hint of yellow
on the bottom.
I have been trying to ID him since I got him and I think I have narrowed it down to three species (even though I could be completely wrong). I have been unable to find a clear source and am having difficulties differentiating the 3 species.
1) A. polymnus (Unsure because his 2nd stripe is thinner and caudal fin doesn't seem as round)
2) A. sebae (Unsure because of the third stripe and black pelvic and anal fins)
3) A. clarkii (Unsure because his caudal fin is mostly black, and he seems to have a more streamline body shape than the few clarkii I have actually seen in real life)
<The Clark's Clown is my guess as well. This might be a cross...>
It is difficult to distinguish the species due to the extreme variation found in all of them.
<The Clarkii in particular>
Thank you very much for your help!!

Re: Clownfish ID, A. allardi  9/3/10
Thank you very much for your response!
<Welcome Katie>
I actually think I figured it out! The male on this thread is almost an exact match to mine.
Thanks again!
<Ahh! Well, you are able to see what you have up close and personal...
Thank you for sharing. BobF> 

Tomato, Cinnamon...Lasagna? -- 03/23/10
Good evening.
I purchased about 5 weeks ago these little dime sized clownfish being sold as Tomato Clowns (Amphiprion frenatus), but after seeing pictures of other Tomatoes and Cinnamon Clowns (Amphiprion melanopus) as well, I'm a bit stumped. They seem to have the broader bars like the cinnamon clowns but the coloration of tomatoes I've seen. There were other fish in the tank at the LFS that were in between the size of the larger one and the smaller ones that had the fading of the secondary stripe which I've heard is a tomato thing but not so much a cinnamon thing. I am enclosing pictures of them with their BTA after graduating QT. Can you help me identify this species?
<Mmm, judging simply on the basis of the width of the white head bands, I'd say these are A. melanopus... however, as generations of A. frenatus have been serially cultured, their markings have become quite variable... Bob Fenner>

Re: Tomato, Cinnamon...Lasagna? -- 03/23/10
Thank you for your reply Bob.
I think some LFS name the fish Tomato because they get them as "misc tomato complex".
<Ahh! A safe moniker. Both species are cultured in good numbers... and it is entirely possible that they've been crossed. Have encountered both with "aberrant" markings... multiple to no barring...!>
I believe there were multiple species in the tank, mostly because even though they were all similar in appearance, some of the fish older than my 2 smallest had their secondary bars vanishing, where mine don't have them present or faded at all. At worst, do all three at least look to be the same species and that I will be feasibly be able to form a pair from these juveniles?
All this talk about tomatoes and cinnamon has got me a bit hungry.
Thank you for your help.
<Heeeee! Welcome. BobF>

True Percula - Black Onyx?   3/21/10
I'm writing as I think that our two True Percula Clowns may be Black Onyx Percula Clowns?
<Look to be the sports called thus>
When we purchased them nearly 4 months ago there was not much black between the stripes but now the largest one has lots and the smaller one is not far behind.
I have attached some photos taken today, I'm just concerned as I would like to make sure that there is no other reason they are turning black?
<Mmm, no. Genetics, developmental expression. No worries>
Thank you in advance for all your excellent help and advice
Kind regards
<Welcome! Bob Fenner>

Re: True Percula - Black Onyx?    3/21/10
Hi Bob
Thank you so much for your reply, it is very exciting - especially as they were purchased as two 'regular' percula clowns, to find out they are even more special.
Kind regards
<An instant bargain again! BobF>

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