Fact Sheet Information

The following terms are used in the pecesycorales.info Fish Fact Sheets . Information on these terms is provided to help you understand what we mean – as our meaning could be different to something you might have seen or heard somewhere else.

Scientific name: All fish are named using a unique binomial naming system. The scientific name has two parts – the genus and the species. When referring to an individual type of fish, both the genus and species names are used. The species name is the most specific name and describes one fish. The genus is less specific and may contain more than one type of fish (several species).

As scientists reclassify fish and discover new characteristics to describe them, scientific names will change. However, the new name is just as unique to that fish as the previous name. We have done extensive research to try and ensure that we have provided the most recent scientific names. Where there has been a change, the synonym/s most likely to be still referred to are also provided.

After the scientific name appears the name of the person (or people) who, first provided a scientific description of the fish, as well as the date this was done. If the name is in brackets, it means that the current scientific name is not the one by which the fish was orignally described.

The scientific name is always written with a capital first letter for the genus name and small letters after and all small letters for the species name – even if it is named after a person. The name may be written in italics or underlined.

We’ve also provided a pronunciation key to the scientific name and a meanings for the names. We think this helps come to grips with the sometimes unfamiliar words. And it is fun to try and see which particular characteristic the fish might have been named for.

Common name: This is the name that the fish is most commonly known. While common names are a useful way to identify a fish, the trouble with common names is that many fish have several common names. For instance, Monodactyl argentus goes by the common names of Mono, Butter Bream and Fingerfish – and there are at least three different South American cichlids that may be known as Flag Cichlid. However, all fish (in fact, all living organisms) have only one scientific name – which is why we recommend that you become familiar with them. Then we all know what fish we’re talking about.

Synonym is a previous scientific name or names that the fish was known by.

Rating at a Glance provides a star rating on the Availability, Hardiness and Overall Appeal of the fish.
The availability is based on the availability of that fish in Queensland; the hardiness is a measure of a few factors, including resistance to disease, special requirements and difficulty in feeding (the degree of difficulty) and the overall appeal is a combination of the previous two ratings plus compatibility, suitability for a range of aquarium types, etc. As a guide –

  • Availability – “not readily available or extremely rare”
  • Hardiness – “extremely delicate requiring special care”
  • Overall Appeal – “suitable for special interest hobbyists; very experienced fish keepers or particular circunstances”

  • Availability – “readily available or common”
  • Hardiness – “extremely hardy or tolerant of a range of conditions”
  • Overall Appeal – “great appeal and scores well overall in a number of areas, such as compatibility, temperament, hardiness and availability”.

Adult size is the size the species could be expected to grow in the aquarium. The sizes are given in centimetres and the size in the wild, where different or known, is also provided.

Sexing is a description of any obvious external differences (colour, fin length, etc) between males and females.

Diet is a guide to the types of food that are suitable to feed the fish. Diet in the wild is given as well.

Swimming level is information about the levels of the tank that the fish prefers to swim in. This helps when it comes to feeding the fish and finding compatible species. This information also helps when you are choosing the size and shape of your tank.

Recommended for provides a guide to the tank types this fish is suited to, such as community tanks, planted tanks, and whether it is suitable for beginners or experienced fishkeepers.

Did You Know? This section contains interesting facts and information about the fish, including the origin of the scientific name.

Species description provides a brief description of the overall colour, shape and patterning of the fish.

Taxonomy lets you see which family the fish belongs to and what is it related to. There are often surprises in the taxonomy and systematic relationships.

Geographical variants discusses any differences or races that are found in various locations throughout a particular habitat. Some fish exhibit a high level of geographical variation, while others have no differences. This is useful in making sure that when fish are bred, the variants can be kept true.

Similar species means fish that may be confused with, or that have similar habits to the primary fish being discussed.

Habitat information contains information about the habitat of the fish, where it is found and how widespread it is over its native range. There is also information on any geographical variants.

Aquarium care provides information on the suggested minimum tank size to keep the fish. This is a guide only, with the size of tank being determined by a number of factors including the other tankmates, territory requirements of the fish, coldwater or tropical, etc. An example of a tank set-up is provided to give an idea of tankmates, decoration, substrate, type of tank, etc. Maintenance and specific diseases of the species are outlined.

The pH, hardness and temperature are listed. A range is given, with an optimal value in brackets. Most fish will tolerate a range of conditions, but it should be noted that they will do better at their optimal tolerances. Fish become stressed if kept too long outside their tolerance range or by rapid fluctuations in pH, hardness and temperature.

Compatibility contains an indication of the temperament of the fish, how they act (schooling, solitary, aggressive) and provides ideas for suitable tankmates. There may be more suitable tankmates than those listed, so please ask us for more information. For example, where a particular fish such as Melanotaenia trifasciata is listed as a suitable tankmate for a particular fish, it may be possible to substitute a fish with similar characteristics and requirements.

Breeding provides some information on breeding. The information is fairly general and if you have an ineterst in breeding a particular fish you should do further research.

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