Bristle Tailed Filefish - Medium
The Bristle Tailed Filefish is a hardy fish which also provides pest control. Its’ unique look and ability to change its’ shades makes it a fascinating addition an aquarium.
The Bristle Tailed Filefish has mottled brown or tan colouring, blending with olive green. This helps the fish camouflage itself and blend into the algae that surrounds its’ natural environment. It is capable of changing shades depending on environment or stress levels. The body is a flat oval shape, with a long dorsal fin and single horn on its’ head.
You can tell males and females apart by patches of bristles on the males’ body or tail. Males are also larger than females. Female Bristle Tailed Filefish lay eggs at the bottom of the ocean, on substrate or around patches of algae. The female will defend the breeding site from other fish.
Bristle Tailed Filefish are usually quite shy and peaceful; but can be aggressive to similar species or family members. They search for food by swimming around coral and rock formations and amongst seagrass.
Bristle Tailed Filefish are hardy and need moderate care. They have a reputation for being an excellent aquarium fish and can help in the removal of pest species.
They are native to East Indian Ocean & Central/West Pacific, including Indonesia, Japan, and Australia
Tank Recommendations for Bristle Tailed Filefish
Their natural habitat is around reefs and patches of rubble in shallow waters. Specimens are often found in weedy or seagrass patches and muddy/sandy areas at a depth or around 3 metres.
A smallest take size of 30 gallons (114 litres) is advised. Avoid keeping small invertebrates which may get eaten.
Bristle Tailed Filefish are reef safe with caution. There are reports of them pecking rocks, coral, and polyps, although often they do not eat them. It may be more suitable to house them in a Fish Only With Live Rock (FOWLR) aquarium.
A suitable aquarium should contain sand or crushed coral substrate, live rock, weedy or seagrass areas and plenty of hiding places.
Suitable Tank Buddies
Bristle Tailed Filefish can co-habit with a wide variety of tank buddies. They may be aggressive to family members or similar species.
Take caution when housing them with more aggressive fish. It isn’t advised to keep small invertebrates in the same tank as they may get eaten.
Avoid housing with more aggressive fish which may harass them, or small invertebrates which may get eaten.
Keep Bristle Tailed Filefish with other non-aggressive fish, which are not conspecific. Dwarf Angels, Anthias, Blennies, Chromis, Damsels, Foxface/Rabbits, Parrotfish and Tangs/Surgeons are all suitable.
There may be conflict if Bristle Tailed Filefish are housed with similar species or family members. Using a larger tank can help ease this. There have been reports of them pecking at Live Coral. Be cautions when housing them with Dragonets, Damsels, Lions/Scorpions, Pseudochromis and Wrasse
More aggressive fish will harass the Bristle Tailed Filefish, nipping at its’ bristles. It isn’t suitable for them to co-habit with small invertebrates, Eels, Groupers, Seahorses/Pipefish or Sharks/Rays
Feeding Your Bristle Tailed Filefish
They are omnivorous and do not need coral polyps which makes them easier to take care of than some other species of filefish.
Bristle Tailed Filefish are well known for their consumption of Aiptaisia & Majano anemones. You may need to wait until they settle into the tank before they starting to feed on them.
You should provide Bristle Tailed Filefish with a varied diet. Frozen items like chopped krill or squid, mysis shrimp and marine algae are suitable.
Once settled in the tank, they will also consume pellets and flake food. It is best to feed them small meals at least 3 times per day.
|Scientific Name||Acreichthys Tomentosus|
|Common Names||Seagrass Filefish, Bristletailed Leatherjacket, Matted Leatherjacket, Tomentosus Filefish & Aiptasia Eating Filefish|
|Max. Length (cm)||9|
|Min. Tank Volume (l)||114|
|Reef Safe||With Caution|
|Water Conditions||22-25 C. dKH 8-12, pH 8.1-8.4, sg 1.020-1.025|