[youtube width=”670″ height=”425″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8H8jd_4NKL8[/youtube]
Wrought Iron butterflyfish are unique among the Chaetodon for their black coloration, strong schooling behavior but most of all they just look totally freakin cool. Furthermore, their subtropical distribution in the waters around Japan means that these butterflyfish don’t eat coral, instead being an omnivorous grazer more like a typical angelfish or a surgeonfish and they readily adapt to prepared aquarium foods. If those qualities weren’t enough, we’d qualify the wrought iron butterflyfish as being one of the most personable butterflyfish there is.
These two Chaetodon daedalma were filmed at the home of our fish-geek neighbor Chris Campbell while they were quarantine-mates with that super cute little bandit angelfish we posted about back in January. Although wrought iron butterflyfish are near perfect aquarium candidates, their restricted distribution and Japanese origin means that these fish command big bucks when they are available in the US; you’d be lucky to even find one for less than a couple grand and a peaceful pair of acclimated and QT’d wrought iron butterflyfish such as these could easily fetch $5000 or more for the two. We nominate the wrought iron butterflyfish for a captive breeding effort to put this awesome aquarium fish in the reach of more aquarists but in the meantime, enjoy the video eye candy.