The most important aspect of spinecheek anemonefish habitat is the host anemone. Entacmaea quadricolor, bulb-tentacle sea anemones, are the only host species for spinecheek anemonefish. This anemone species is characterized by polyps 50 to 400 mm in diameter, depending on depth. They have brown tentacles of about 100 mm long with a red tip and white bulb at the end of the tentacle. Spinecheek anemonefish tend to live mainly in solitary specimens of Entacmaea quadricolor on reef slopes. The typical water depth is less than 50 m, because anemones require sunlight to grow. The mutualistic zooxanthellae (living within the anemone) need this sunlight to photosynthesize and provide energy for themselves and the anemone. These anemone prefer tropical warm waters with the temperature ranging between 25 and 28°C (77-82°F).
Range depth: 50 (high) m.
Habitat Regions: tropical ; saltwater or marine
Aquatic Biomes: reef ; coastal
- Fautin, D., D. Allen. 1992. Field Guide to Anemone Fishes and their Host Sea Anemones. Perth, WA 6000 Australia: Western Australian Museum. Accessed April 11, 2006 at http://www.nhm.ku.edu/inverts/ebooks/intro.html.