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Raccoon Butterflyfish

(Chaetodon lunula)

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 Quick Care Facts

• Care Level: Moderate   • Temperament: Peaceful   • Maximum Size: 8"
• Minimum Tank Size: 75 gallons   • Water Conditions: 72-80° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.020-1.025
• Diet: Omnivore   • Origin: Western Pacific, Hawaii
• Family: Chaetodontidae   • Species: Butterflyfish   • Aquarium Type: FOWLR

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Native Habitat and Species Information

Raccoon Butterflyfish native habitat, distribution, behavior & aquarium compatibility.

Raccoon Butterflyfish are a beautiful, bright yellow, black, and white colored fish that can be found throughout the Western Pacific, from Indonesia to Hawaii. Raccoon Butterflyfish are a hardy species that aren't as picky as some of their other Butterflyfish relatives, but when first acclimating to a new aquarium, they may refrain from eating; although they can eventually be enticed with live food items and small anemones. Raccoon Butterflyfish are very peaceful with heterospecific tank mates, but can be territorial with their own kind and should be kept in a large aquarium with adequate territory if more than one is desired.

Although they are a nocturnal species, the Raccoon Butterflyfish will show increased daylight activity as it matures. Their environment should be well oxygenated with surface agitation and have plenty of water movement.

Aquarium Care

How to successfully keep Raccoon Butterflyfish in the home aquarium.

A single Raccoon Butterflyfish requires an aquarium of at least 75 gallons and multiple specimens should be kept in a much larger system (150+ gallons and up); they should be provided with ample swimming space and plenty of live rock for territory and security. Quality filtration consisting of biological, mechanical and protein skimming should be utilized to keep excellent water quality as well as a highly oxygenated environment with sufficient water movement.

Lighting intensity is not an issue, but they should be provided with places of shade or darkness where they may go to relax as they are naturally a nocturnal species. Raccoon Butterflyfish are peaceful and get along extremely well with other marine species, but can be territorial towards conspecifics and very similar fish; A wide range of tank mates would be acceptable, but they should be species that are not overly aggressive and do not bully other species. They should be kept in a FOWLR system as they will eat LPS coral, SPS coral, anemones, and some invertebrates as part of their natural diet.

Feeding & Nutrition

How to feed and provide proper nutrition for Raccoon Butterflyfish.

Raccoon Butterflyfish are nocturnal omnivores that mainly feed on anemones, coral polyps, nudibranchs, and a variety of benthic invertebrates within their natural environment. In the aquarium they should be fed a wide variety of meaty foods such as live, frozen, freeze-dried, and vitamin enriched brine shrimp, mysis shrimp, krill, chopped clams, mussels, and other crustacean flesh. They will also readily accept a variety of nutritious flake foods (carnivore, omnivore, and herbivore). Feeding should be 1 to 2 times per day and only what will be consumed within a few minutes.

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