For a long time now the Copperband Butterfly fish has been popular with marine aquarist because of the odd shape, stunning colors, and steady availability. On top of being a beautiful fish they are amazing with Aiptasia control!
Common Names: Copperband Butterfly
Skill Level: Difficult
Water Conditions: 72-78° F, dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.023-1.025
Best kept in large aquariums the Copperband butterfly fish is a peaceful addition to a fish only tank or a reef tank. Being a very timid fish it should not be kept with any fish which will bully up on it and the Copperband should be given many places to hide and take refuge. This fish is also best kept one per aquarium.
The Copperband butterfly fish is my favorite form for Aiptasia control. Once introduced in your tank the Aiptasia do not stand a chance. With its long beak the Copperband can stick its mouth into small crevices to reach anywhere the Aiptasia tries to retract into. When it comes to wiping out Aiptasia this fish has a voracious appetite. Once you have introduced a healthy Copperband to your tank Aiptasia will not long be a problem.
The problem with Copperband butterfly fish is that they are very difficult to feed. During transportation this fish has a likely chance of damaging its beak. This will prevent it from feeding properly and it will eventually starve to death. If possible ask to see the fish eat at the pet store, try to only accept a fish if you are able to see it eat. On top of this worry even if the butterfly fish’s beak isn’t damaged they are very finicky feeders.
Living brine shrimp is the ideal diet for a Copperband butterfly. You will hopefully be able to wean the fish off of a live diet to frozen food, it may just take a while. You will also notice your butterfly fish poking its elongated beak around the rocks and coral for small prey. This is a good thing and can help supplement your fish’s diet and possibly remove some unwanted aquarium pests.