- Group: Saltwater
- Size: Small
- Temperament: Non-aggressive
- Aquarium Size: Medium (30 gal)
- Swimming Region(s): Bottom
- Suitable Tank Mates: Dwarf Angelfish, Anthias, Basslets, Batfish, Clownfish, Boxfish, Rabbitfish and Tangs
- Difficulty Of Care: Weekly care
Jawfish General description
Jawfish are species of saltwater fish very similar in appearance to blennies. They are however smaller in size than blennies and are characterized by their comparatively larger mouths and heads. Jawfishes are an extremely intelligent, hardy species of fish and are highly popular amongst beginner and experienced aquarists alike.
Jawfish are species of saltwater fish very similar in appearance to blennies.
Jawfishes are found in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans.
Most species of jawfishes have dazzling body colorations and patterns. They come in shades of pastel, yellow, blue, green, brown, black and white.
Maintenance and care
The jawfish is an extremely peaceful species of fish and makes an excellent addition to most community saltwater aquariums. However, care should be taken not to house jawfish in aquariums with larger, more aggressive tank mates that can harass or prey on them.
Jawfishes do best when housed in aquariums with a thick layer of sand substrate. These fish enjoy digging lengthy tunnels in the substrate and use these tunnels as protection from potential predators. In the aquarium they can be seen lounging near the openings of their tunnels and darting in and out of them in search of prey. They defend the immediate areas surrounding their tunnel openings, and when keeping several jawfishes together it is advisable to use a great deal of rock and coral to break up each fish’s line of sight. This reduces the area that each fish will feel the need to defend and will help curb displays of aggression. These fish will also often spend a considerable amount of time arranging the sand and rubble to create the perfect burrow for itself and this makes for a highly fascinating sight in the aquarium. These fish should also be housed in aquariums with tight fitting lids as they can sometimes attempt to jump out when feeling stressed or threatened.
The jawfish is an extremely peaceful species of fish and makes an excellent addition to most community saltwater aquariums.
Jawfish are carnivorous and do best when fed on a meaty and varied diet. When feeding the jawfish in the aquarium, its best to siphon small amounts of food like brine shrimp, krill and minced shellfish into a turkey baster and discharge the food close to the jawfish’s burrow openings.
Jawfish are mouth brooders and provide parental care for their eggs and fry. There are a few reports of jawfish being successfully bred in the home aquarium.
Chinstrap Jawfishes, Black Cap Jawfishes, Blue Dot Jawfishes, Yellowhead Jawfishes, etc.
Photo credit: johnanderson/Bigstock.com; Pam Corey/Flickr
Tagged as: beginner aquarists, Blennies, carnivorous, colorful, coral, experienced aquarists, hardy fish, intelligent fish, intermediate aquarists, Jawfish, mouth brooders, sand substrate