27-02-2021, 20:59
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Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis

Harbour Surgeon, Chevron Surgeon, Hawaiian Ctenochaetus in the wild inhabits the Pacific Ocean, in an area stretching from Hawaii eastward to eastern Polynesia, southward to central Polynesia and westward to the Mariana Islands. Adults flock in shallower areas near reefs with numerous crevices, where the surf has greatly oxygenated the water. Juveniles prefer to be singly kept at depth among palmate corals.

Especially beautiful Surgeon Chevron is at a young age, when its coloration is the most contrasting. Keep in mind that the chevron tail plumage loses its bright coloring with age, but even adults are very beautiful. These fish quickly adapt to aquarium life and are recommended for keeping beginners aquarists who have some experience in caring for the marine aquarium.

Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis

Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis is very colourful when young, with dark purple, orange and red markings. Under aquarium conditions, the chevron tail of the fish retains its youthful coloration much longer than in nature. Chevron tails have been known to retain their juvenile coloration for three years, while in nature they change colour after a year. As the fish matures, the red and purple colours fade and the colouring becomes dark brown, almost black, with many thin horizontal yellowish-grey lines on the sides of the body and head. The sex differences are not pronounced. Uniquely sex fish can be determined only during the spawning period, when the males, while courting females acquire a brighter coloration.

Fish require an aquarium with a capacity of at least 500 liters. This is a fish that needs a lot of living space. Although they are the smallest and least active fish of the surgeonfish family, they require such a large aquarium so that they can sustain an abundance of algae colonies, which form the main diet of these fish. The fish use their teeth to nibble algae off stones and various surfaces. Often, you can often see the lip marks of the fish on the glass where the algae used to grow.

The Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis is a moderately aggressive fish and is often harmed by other surgeon fish species. Chevrons usually get along well with other inhabitants of the aquarium, except for their own kind, and rarely bother the sedentary invertebrates. Excellent neighbours for these fish are Zebrasoma sailfish and Centropigus yellow, although care should be taken to ensure their compatibility. You can also add a few neon gobies and cleaner shrimps to the aquarium.

Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis

Water parameters: temperature 23-26° C, hardness dH 9-12°, acidity pH 8,1-8,4, salinity 1.020-1.025. The Ctenochaetus surgeon is susceptible to bacteria caused by the accumulation of organics, which leads to considerable water quality deterioration. Therefore, increased filtration, aeration and regular, small water changes with fresh water are required.

Although the Hawaiian Fishes Surgeonfish is a herbivorous fish and its diet consists of marine microalgae, it can also be fed with shrimps and shredded fish meat. Plant food should predominate in the diet of the fish. Therefore place plenty of live rock in the aquarium. Give the fish spirulina, seaweed, shrimp mizid, and flakes containing spirulina. Feed the fish three times a day in small portions.


The Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis, like other surgeonfish, spawns in groups. Females scatter eggs in the water column during spawning, after which the male, swimming over it, emits a cloud of milk, fertilizing the eggs as they move. The female hatches hundreds of eggs several times a year, usually during the spring and summer months.

The fertilized eggs float to the surface of the water and join the stream of plankton that feeds on the hatching larvae.

Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis

The Ctenochaetus hawaiiensis does not breed under aquarium conditions.

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