Lawnmower Blenny FOTM January '09

Discussion in 'Fish of the Month' started by PharmrJohn, Jan 12, 2009.

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  1. PharmrJohn

    PharmrJohn The Dude

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Shelton, Washington
    FOTM: Lawnmower Blenny (January 2009)
    (AKA: Rockskipper/Jewelled Rockskipper/Leopard Rockskipper)

    [​IMG]

    [SIZE=+0]The Basics[/SIZE]​

    Size: Can grow to 5 or 6 inches
    Care: Listed as Easy, I classify as intermediate
    Temperment: Peaceful to other fish. Recommend one per tank.
    Diet: Algae (loves hair algae)
    Reef Safe: Yes
    Invert Safe: Yes

    Classification: Salarius fasciatus. Just 1 of 732 species within 6 families containing 127 genera.

    Characterization: The blenny family is characterized by fin arrangement and various cirri that differenciate it further. In the case of the LM blenny, there is the typical long and continuous dorsal fin and large pectoral fins. In addition the cirri above the eyes give it a very cool and distinctive eyelash. Coloration is rather drab in my opinion, but what it lacks in color it easily makes up for in personality. Males are larger than females and may differ in coloration during spawning.


    Coloration: As stated above, the LM blenny is rather drab, a combination of greys that have hints of blue if you look close enough (In eyes, face and body). Photos are not able to capture it's unique speckle clearly, but upon close examination, this fish is beautiful. If anyone here on the forums were to capture the true colors on film, it would be Omard. Mine has the majority of it's highlights on the rear body and, of course, it's eyes. Also, they are able, as most fish, to change their appearance secondary to their surroundings. It can and does react to that which it is resting and the lighting that it is under. I named mine Waldo, as he is hard to find, blended in with it's environment.​


    Habitat: A native of the Indian Ocean, they prefer a tank with lots of live rock. It is an herbivore and requires careful consideration before adding to a tank. I have seen over and over again a tank size recommendation of at least 10 gallons and an easy rating in terms of care. I disagree with both. I would say it is an intermediate classification and requires a tank no less than 55 gallons (and that is pushing it).

    Feeding: Here is the reason I give this fish an intermediate rating and disagree with recommended tank size. It likes hair algae and very, very few will accept prepared food; mine has not accepted anything I have thrown at it. Dining off the algae on the live rock and glass, it thrives only because my tank is not spotless. If your tank is too clean, or the cleaning crew is too efficient, starvation is a definite possibility. So consider your habitat before introducing this specimen. It is a true plug and play entity.

    Behavior: I love this fish. As I have said, personality is it's strong point. It hangs around, observing it's surroundings, both inside and outside the tank, constantly feeding, gulping at the rock and glass, changing outward appearance in an effort to camouflage. It moves around quite a bit, as it is in constant search of food. The lack of a swim bladder makes it a bottom dweller and when swimming ensues, your attention is captured.

    General Precautions: To wrap this up, I give just a general warning about the LMB. Feeding is difficult. Do not keep your tank too clean. It requires a larger tank than typically specified in literature, so those with a 20g long, please refrain from picking the LMB. Also, this fish can jump. Eggcrate over the aquarium is highly recommended. Since I have a canopy, I just have a strip of eggcrate along the back to keep him from taking a dive behind the tank. If you try to catch it in a net, good luck. Once you get it to the surface, it will launch.

    A few more pics for your consideration....

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Peace.......John.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2009
    5 people like this.
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  3. PharmrJohn

    PharmrJohn The Dude

    Joined:
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    The pics did not translate....fixing.

    Edit: Done.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2009
  4. softiegirl

    softiegirl Plankton

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    Dec 30, 2008
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    Location:
    Macomb, Michigan
    I love my LMB, his name is leonard (typical lol). He has a ton of personality and loves to sit right by the glass and stare at ya! No problem in the eating dept, he's a fatso! :sweethear
     
  5. missionsix

    missionsix Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Awesome article John...... Wish i had one to share pics/info. ;D
     
  6. PharmrJohn

    PharmrJohn The Dude

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    Thanks dude......Went a little smoother this time did it not????!!!!!!
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. missionsix

    missionsix Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Much smoother....:)
     
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  9. yeager003

    yeager003 Bristle Worm

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
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    131
    Location:
    Arvada, CO
    John i have a starry blenny i just found it more eyecatching. Its colors change from white to black in spots. Yet another well done article. K+
     
  10. Av8Bluewater

    Av8Bluewater Giant Squid

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    Location:
    Dallas
    I love lawnmowers. They don't like my tank though.. two died. .. so I 'm hesitant to try them again. They lived for a couple weeks but didn't seem to be eating much and just died.
     
  11. BaxterS80

    BaxterS80 Pajama Cardinal

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    Baltimore, MD
    Great job....I have a starry blenny and he will eat anything that I feed the rest of the tank. He definitely keeps the tank free of algae along with my the tangs and pygmy angel....We is one heck of a fish...
     
  12. ssgheislerswife

    ssgheislerswife Ritteri Anemone

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    Location:
    Maumelle, AR
    Great Article John.

    The LMB is by far my two year old son's favorite fish. I also agree that they need a larger tank. I put one in my 25H by reading the recommendation and he became a carpet surfing blenny.

    I will add though that you should only keep one per tank and that larger (probably male) LMB's can be aggressive when defending their chosen territory in a reef tank. I have a pair of blue jaw triggers and it is not uncommon to find the little LMB "kiss" marks on the side of the triggers. They finally learned to stay clear of his hole and everyone gets along swimingly.

    Ginny