MYSTERY REEF ANIMAL ANSWER: Kamohara Blenny

14 Oct, 2021

The Kamohara Blenny, Meiacanthus kamoharai, is an elegant study in monochromatic coloration! Photo credit: Yi-Kai Tea

Did you guess correctly?

The Kamohara Fangblenny was a “book fish” less than a decade ago, one of those species that people may have been vaguely aware of through books and online references, but wasn’t part of the offerings in the aquarium trade. It’s native to Japan which is not exactly a hotbed of routine marine ornamental fishing. It wasn’t until 2012, through the efforts of Koji Wada and Blue Harbor Japan, that this species entered the trade.

Only three years later, Oceans Reefs and Aquariums (ORA) successfully brought the species to market thanks to intensive captive-breeding efforts. In subsequent years, this species has also become available through other marine ornamental aquaculture facilities.

A gorgeous example of a captive-bred Kamohara Blenny, courtesy ORA
A gorgeous example of a captive-bred Kamohara Blenny, courtesy ORA
The forthcoming November/December 2021 issue of CORAL Magazine. There is still time to subscribe and receive this issue!

Like many of its fangblenny relatives, the Kamohara Blenny is far more outgoing than what we typically associate with its less closely related benthic and cryptically-colored kin. They are active and open-water swimmers, and with that comes a greater demand for routine nourishment. For the most part, the only special requirement for the successful maintenance of captive-bred fangblennies is multiple feedings per day with smaller, meaty foods options. As captive-bred specimens, fangblennies come highly recommended. They are generally hardy (compared to wild-caught counterparts) and feed readily (again, in contrast to wild-caught specimens).

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About the author

Matt Pedersen

Matt Pedersen is a Sr. Editor and Associate Publisher with Reef To Rainforest Media, LLC & CORAL Magazines, and is a Sr. Editor and Publishing Partner with Aquatic Media Press, LLC & AMAZONAS Magazine. Matt has kept aquariums for 38 years, has worked in most facets of the aquarium trade, is an active aquarist and fish breeder (both marine and freshwater), and was recognized with the 2009 MASNA Award as the MASNA Aquarist of the Year.

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