Planktonic food such as zooplankton, copepods, and algae are the primary source of food for A. ocellaris (Myers 1999). They are classified as generalized omnivores as they feed on equal amounts of algae and animals (Sano et al. 1984). They are also reported to consume parasites from their host anemones (Thresher 1984). Feeding is also dominated by the hierarchical structure of the group dynamics in the anemone. Because the smaller fish receive the most aggression from the others, they have reduced energy for foraging great distances from the anemone and tend to stay close. Additionally, it is unsafe for the smaller fish to stray farther from the safety of the anemone (Fautin and Allen 1992). The large, dominant fish will forage at greater distances, but generally no farther than several meters from the anemone.
Animal Foods: aquatic crustaceans; zooplankton
Plant Foods: algae
Primary Diet: planktivore
- Sano, M., M. Shimizu, Y. Nose. 1984. Food habits of teleostean reef fishes in Okinawa Island, Southern Japan. Japan: University of Tokyo Press.