Beauty Of Animals | Clownfish-Anemonefish | Clownfish or anemonefish are fishes from the subfamily Amphiprioninae in the family Pomacentridae. Twenty-eight species are recognized, one in the genus Premnas, while the remaining are in the genus Amphiprion. In the wild they all form symbiotic mutualisms with sea anemones. Depending on species, clownfish are overall yellow, orange, reddish or blackish, and many show white bars or patches. The largest can reach a length of 18 centimetres (7.1 in), while some barely can reach 10 centimetres (3.9 in).
In popular culture, the film Finding Nemo by Pixar prominently features clownfish as the main characters.Clownfish are native to warmer waters of the Indian and Pacific oceans, including the Great Barrier Reef and the Red Sea. While most species have restricted distributions, others are widespread. Clownfish live at the bottom of the sea in sheltered reefs or in shallow lagoons. There are no clownfish in the Atlantic.
The clownfish feeds on small invertebrates which otherwise potentially could harm the sea anemone, and the fecal matter from the clownfish provides nutrients to the sea anemone. Clownfish are omnivorous: in the wild they eat live food such as algae, plankton, mollusks, and crustacea; in captivity they can survive on live food, fish flakes, and fish pellets. Algae accounts for around 20 to 25 percent of its diet in the wild (and should also account for its amount of algae diet in captivity as well). The diet of the clownfish also consists of copepods, mysids, isopods, zooplankton and undigested food from their host anemones.
Clownfish and sea anemones have a symbiotic, mutualistic relationship; each providing a number of things to benefit the other. The individual species are generally highly host specific, and especially the genera Heteractis and Stichodactyla, and the species Entacmaea quadricolor are frequent clownfish partners. The sea anemone protects the clownfish from predators, as well as providing food through the scraps left from the anemone's meals. In return, the clownfish defends the anemone from its predators, and cleans it from parasites. The anemone also potentially picks up nutrients from the Clownfish's excrement, and functions as a safe nest site. It has been theorized that the clownfish use their bright colouring to lure small fish to the anemone, and that the activity of the clownfish results in greater water circulation around the sea anemone.
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