*fish confuse me*

Discussion in 'Saltwater Beginners' started by Naeusu, Dec 14, 2009.

  1. NaeusuValued MemberMember

    Okay... so I understand my sailfin gets darker or bolder when excited or stressed. My Maroon gets darker depending on dominance. My Queen Angel is changing because she'll eventually be different colors as an adult...


    Last night I came home at 3 and as always I checked on my fishy pals...everyone except my 3 cardinals were asleep. 2 (the banggais) were zipping around the tank avoiding me and I noticed a fish that was vaguely familiar but not. At first i thought maybe the other half bought a new fish without telling me so i popped on the lights to get a better look. With the lights on I could tell it had the same cardinal shape but was almost a pure silver white with two darkening stripes on the body. I then realized this was the black cardinal I'd been worrying about...I turned off the light and went to bed thoroughly confused but swearing I'd look him up in the morning. In the morning he was back to being brownish black and I haven't been able to find ANYTHING that talks about him going snowy white in the dark...

    anyone have black cardinals before that can explain why he does this? is it like...a defense tactic or just one of those fishy mysteries?
  2. Aquarist

    AquaristFishlore LegendMember

    Hello Naeusu. Many different species of fish changes colors or fade once the lights go out. It's like it's their relaxing period. I'm sure you'll get more responses.
  3. sgouldWell Known MemberMember

    I'm not sure what the biological explanation is, but I notice color fading and coming back on many of my fish depending on time of day and lighting. In particular, I notice fading during dark hours, recovery during daylight.
  4. locoyo386

    locoyo386Well Known MemberMember

    Hi there,
    Don't know too much of the black cardinal fish but I have read they grow very slow but can reach about 29" and can live about 100 years.

    Also if you noticed color changing all fish and not just the cardinal fish than it could be from two things; The first is that when they get ready to go to sleep or when they wake up their colors get lighter or darker. The second reason is, if you are noticing their color variations during the day when the lights have been on for at lesat an housr or so, stress. The fish can be stressing out for different reasons, like other tank mates, water conditions (high nitrates, low oxygen or others) or other reasons.
  5. ATP

    ATPWell Known MemberMember

    The cardinal fish you're talking about might be a different one. The one you're talking about is all so called black cardinalfish, but is more commonly called bulls eye or deepsea cardinal fish of the species E. telescopus. The normal black cardinalfish is of the species apagon melas which only grows about 4-6 inches in length.
  6. OP

    NaeusuValued MemberMember

    Thank you for all the helpful replies! I've never felt so helpless or uneducated as I do with fish...
  7. locoyo386

    locoyo386Well Known MemberMember

    Ah the one he is talking about is the Apogonidae Black Cardinalfish, and yeah they grow to 4". cool I learned something today.

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