Monday, January 25, 2010


The Auriga Butterflyfish, also known as the Threadfin Butterflyfish, is one of the more popular and readily available butterflyfish. Generally a hardy species, in the wild it is found on inner and outer reef slopes. As with many fish, the Threadfin Butterfly's color and markings can vary with the region of origin. Extends from Hawaii southward to central Polynesia and Australia and westward through Micronesia, Melanesia, the East Indies, and across the Indian Ocean to the coast of Africa and the Red Sea.

The Auriga Butterflyfish's diet should primarily consist of plankton frozen, freeze-dried, fresh or flake food is readily accepted. Also provide regular vegetable food source and vitamin-boosting supplements.

Approximate Purchase Size: Small: 1-1/2" to 2-1/2"; Medium: 2-1/2" to 4"; Large: 4" to 6"

The Auriga Butterflyfish is quite shy and should be provided multiple hiding places. It is safe to keep it in a live rock-only tank, although it will pick at the rock , but is one of the more aggressive species that is best kept singly or as a mated pair. It will often chase related species and other non-related fishes that have similar color patterns.As with many fish, the Threadfin Butterfly's color and markings can vary with the region of origin. Red Sea specimens tend to lose the eyespot (false eye to confuse predators) on the dorsal fin.

If you will try to raise it you need to have 75 galoons tanks or up and Provide with lots of shelter and room to move around. A fish that is sensitive to even the lowest levels of ammonia, as well as touchy to other changes in its environment relating to poor water quality issues. Not suitable. Will eat a wide variety of soft and stony corals and desirable invertebrates.

These vividly colored fish can add a stunning splash of color to an aquarium. Their oval shaped bodies are compressed and are white, black and bright yellow.
The Auriga’s have a black band that runs from the top of their heads and ends at the jaw, covering the eye. The back of their bodies are vivid yellow with an eye spot at the top of the dorsal fin.
They have perpendicular bands that run up and down on snow white front bodies. These bands may or may not be lined with black. And, they have an elongated nose that they use to dig in corals and substrate for foods.

Breeding may do so, Auriga Butterflyfish are very monogamous, they will choose a mate and remain with the same partner for years. Breeding in captivity is quite difficult, the fry go through a metamorphosis that increases mortality rate.
They can breed all year long and will spawn frequently. Eggs are released into water columns and externally fertilized. The eggs float in the water columns for around 30 days before morphing into plankton and spending another 40 days floating in the column.
Hundreds of thousands of eggs can be released during each spawning. There’s very little information known about their breeding and parenting habits since they are so difficult to breed. But, it’s suspected that once the eggs are released there’s no further parenting or protection from the parents.

When first introduced to the tank, the Auriga Butterflyfish may refuse to eat. If this continues or three days or more, try offering them live foods. If they still refuse to eat, soaking their food in garlic can sometimes coax them into eating it!
Butterflyfish have very small mouths and their teeth are flexible! As they age a long, trailing filament will begin to grow from their dorsal fin that can grow up to 8 inches long.

Common Names: Auriga Butterflyfish, Threadfin Butterflyfish, Cross-Stripe Butterflyfish
Scientific Name: Chaetodon auriga
Family: Chaetodontidae
Maximum Size: 9 inches
Life expectancy: 5 years
Minimum Tank Size: 50 gallons
Temperature Range: 72-78 °F
pH Range: 8.2 – 8.4
SG: 1.021 – 1.023
Water hardness: 8 – 12
Temperament: Peaceful
Origin: Fiji, Hawaii, Indo-Pacific, Maldives, Tonga