Neoglyphidodon oxyodon

Common Names: Black Velvet Damselfish
Bluestreak Damselfish
Synonyms: Abudefduf oxyodon
Glyphidodon oxyodon
Paraglyphidodon oxyodon
Family: Pomacentridae
Category: Damselfish
Distribution: Indo Pacific; Found in reefs around the Philippines, the Ashmore Reef in the Timor Sea, and various Indonesian reefs.
Main Ecosystem: Reef; Found on mature reefs with abundant populations of Acropora or similar branched reef building corals, which the fish uses for shelter. One of several aquarium fishes collected from the surge zone.
Temperament: Territorial; Like most Damselfishes, given to territorial behaviour, though not as strongly manifested as in, for example, the various Dascyllus species. However, only one individual is likely to be able to occupy a typical marine aquarium - to house several individuals with the intention of witnessing pairing and possible spawning would require a 300 gallon or larger aquarium. Likely to exhibit territorial behaviour toward certain other Damselfish species in addition to conspecifics, and compete vigorously with other Damselfishes and Clownfishes for aquarium 'real estate'. May harass certain smaller, peaceful fishes - some individuals may live alongside Gobies and Blennies, but it is wise to provide alternative housing for either the Damselfish or the Gobies/Blennies if the attempted cohabitation fails. Likely to be well-disposed toward such fishes as Butterfly Fishes, larger Angelfishes, Surgeonfishes and Tangs, though companions should not be large enough to consider the Damselfish as a meal!
Diet: Ominvore; Recorded as eating a wide range of foods in the wild, including zooplankton and filamentous algae. Readily takes to a wide range of aquarium fare, all food items being consumed greedily. Is likely to out-compete certain other fishes for food in the aquarium, so again, companions should be chosen with care.
Care: A fairly typical Damselfish in that it is hardy, robust and readily adaptable to aquarium life. Provide coral/rock aquascaping, preferably with one or more overhangs, and at least one good sized branching coral head. This latter item is particularly important if attempting to keep a group of these fishes in a large aquarium. One important point to note is that it is, in the wild, a shallow water fish that is frequently found in the surge zone, and thus may be less well disposed to low oxygen content than other Damselfishes.
24°C - 28°C
75°F - 82°F
Specific Gravity:
1.019 - 1.026
Potential Size: Male: 15cm (5.9")
Female: 15cm (5.9")
Water Region: Middle, Bottom; In the wild, shelters in branched coral heads and remains close to cover. In the aquarium, likely to be much bolder depending upon other aquarium companions, and occupy any part of the aquarium, particularly during feeding.
Activity: Diurnal; Busily active throughout daylight hours, sparring with conspecifics, foraging for food etc. Takes shelter in coral heads to sleep at night.
Gender: No reliable visible external differences visible in non-mating individuals. If spawning is observed, the shape of the genital papilla may, as in other Damselfish species, prove to be a reliable determining characteristic.
Breeding: Thus far, no reports of breeding for this species have been submitted in the literature. This is probably due to the expense of the species - as a relatively rare species, it is usually amongst the most expensive of the Damselfishes, and thus obtaining sufficient individuals for a breeding programme will involve considerable capital outlay.
Variants: None known.
Comments: A magnificent, showy and exquisitely coloured Damselfish, whose rarity and associated expense has already been cited. Individuals in prime condition possess a wonderful blue-black velvet lustre, with a neon-blue oblique double stripe (which is iridescent - unusally among marine fishes) and a large white vertical stripe. Likely to remain expensive due to the difficulty involved in collecting an agile fish among coral branches and debris in the surge zone where it is most frequently found.
Main Colours: Black, White, Blue
Markings: Striped Vertical
Mouth: Normal
Tail: Concave
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Submitted By: Calilasseia
Contributors: Calilasseia
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