Pajama Cardinal (Sphaeramia nematoptera)
Scientific Name: Sphaeramia nematoptera
About the Pajama Cardinal
Species Type: Saltwater Fish
Care Level: Easy. Ships well and acclimates well to the home aquarium. Accepts dried foods eagerly and quickly after acclimation. Is resistant to disease. An overall good choice for the new saltwater hobbyist.
Origin: South Asia Ocean
Compatibility/Temperament: Cardinalfish by no means are considered an "aggressive" fish. They do very well when in small schools. They prefer lots of hiding places since they are a mild, slow-swimming fish. They are considered a reef-safe fish.
The Pajama Cardinalfish, also known as the Spotted Cardinalfish, is a very attractive addition to any reef or fish only aquarium. They prefer to hide in sea grasses or hover around the spines of Sea Urchins, although do not need an Urchin to thrive in home aquaria. These fish are beautifully dressed with a bold black line dividing the body at the dorsal fin, and have a colorfully spotted posterior against a gray body. The Pajama Cardinalfish make for a nice addition to any home aquaria, and their peaceful temperament makes them "reef-compatible" and able to keep with a variety of other "reef-safe" and non "reef-safe" fish alike.
The Pajama Cardinal generally is comfortable is water that is between 75-80 degrees F and specific gravity is between 1.021 and 1.026. Generally keep the dKH between 8-12 and the Calcium between 400-450. The Pajama Cardinal will do better in tanks that have a nitrate reading less than 20 ppm.
Pajama Cardinal Diet
The Pajama Cardinal is a carnivore that will feed on pods and other microfauna in the aquarium. Their diet can be supplemented with spirulina, frozen brine shrimp and any pellet or flake food. Any garlic additive will help strengthen their immune system.
Species tend to grow between 3-4"
Minimum Tank Suggestion
Ideal water parameters for Pajama Cardinal
Marine fish are highly sensitive animals with very specific care requirements. Most all saltwater species will require similar water conditions, designed to replicate that of natural seawater. Ammonia and nitrite levels should absolute zero, temperature at 76F to 80F, and salinity at 1.024 to 1.026. Although some fish are tolerant of lower levels of Nitrate, the goal in every aquariums should be to keep Nitrate as close to zero as possible, and certainly under 20ppm. Finally, maintaining a stable pH of 8.0 to 8.4 is desired. Achieving this is made easier by monitoring alkalinity, which should be kept at 8-12 DKH, and calcium, which is targeted at 400 to 460ppm.
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