Category: Salt Water
Facts about the Phantom Butterflyfish, Heniochus pleurotaenia, however it is also known as the Phantom Bannerfish. The Phantom Butterflyfish resides in the coral reefs of Sri Lana and the Maldives. The Phantom Butterflyfish are usually found swimming in pairs and like to be near the rich coral growth. Noted for its beauty and moderate care levels, many Phantom Butterflyfish choose to keep them in their homes and in aquariums.
The Phantom Bannerfish is a very striking fish with its black, white, and yellow appearance. This Phantom Butterflyfish is also known for its two very prominent and protruding horns on the top of its head, that appear once it reaches full maturity. What they are also instantly recognized for is their bold white stripe, that runs from its dorsal fins, all along the length of its back. On average the Phantom Butterflyfish grow up to 17cm in length.
The Phantom Butterflyfish are well known for having a peaceful temperament, although they can be very territorial. They can cope with other Phantom Butterflyfish but ideally, if being introduced to a tank, they should be introduced in pairs or with a larger group of Phantom Butterflyfish at the same time. This will help them to settle and will hopefully avoid fights and injury. It is also important to note that when they are first introduced to the tank, ideally you will need to provide places of shelter and were they can comfortably hide away. This is because they tend to be very shy fish, and until they know their fish tank mates, they do prefer a bit of alone time.
The Phantom Butterflyfish do need a relatively large tank in which to survive. Ideally this should be larger than a 125 gallon tank. Temperature should be kept between 72 to 78 degrees F and the Ph. level should be be maintained at between 8.1 to 8.4.
In the wild the Phantom Butterflyfish generally eats plankton as it is readily available and provides all of the nutrients that it needs. The Phantom Butterflyfish are also known to eat coral polyps and Christmas tree worms in the wild. When caring for them in a tank environment, the Phantom Butterflyfish will need a diet of frozen, or flake bought fish food. Fresh fish food is also acceptable. However it is also highly recommended that they are also given a diet of fresh vegetables and vitamin supplements. This is because their diet in the wild is rich in vitamins and minerals. To help them with their feeding, the Phantom Butterfyfish have very bristle like teeth, which allows them in the wild to feed on the microscopic organisms that bigger fish are unable to eat.
The Phantom Butterflyfish are extremely active fish, and is one of the reasons why they need a large tank. They are able to travel quickly and for relatively short distances with the help of their pectoral fin. This allows them to brake quickly and to spin and reverse in the shallow waters.
To try and identify the sex of these Phantom Butterflyfish is incredibly difficult and takes a trained eye.