It’s colorful, a champion algae eater and peaceful towards its tankmates. Oh, and it sports venomous spikes. How cool can a fish be?! We’re talking about the fox faced rabbitfish, of course.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about fox faced rabbitfish and their care in the home aquarium.
|Name (Common, Scientific)||Fox faced rabbitfish, foxface rabbitfish, foxface Lo, Siganus vulpinus|
|Minimum tank size||125 gallons|
|Minimum group size||1|
Fox faced rabbitfish (Siganus vulpinus) description
Naturally found in the western Pacific, the fox faced rabbitfish is quite a sight to see. They grow to a maximum size of around 9” and feature yellow body coloration with a black and white head.
Fox faced rabbitfish mouths are elongated to make them perfect algae nipping machines and they sport pointy, venomous dorsal spines.
Did you know? The fox faced rabbitfish is very similar to the one spot foxfish (Siganus unimaculatus). The difference is that the one spot foxface, as its name suggests, has a black spot on its side. Their care requirements are pretty much identical and in fact, it has been suggested they’re just color variants of the same species.
Fox faced rabbitfish (Siganus vulpinus) aquarium
As mentioned above, a fox faced rabbitfish can grow to up to 9” in length. They’re not small fish, and they’re very active too, so it’s a good idea to provide plenty of space. An aquarium of 125 gallons or up works well for this species.
The fox faced rabbitfish tends to spend a lot of time swimming out in the open, so make sure yours has enough room to move around. As always, though, you should also provide some hiding places for the fish to retreat to if startled.
Did you know? If you turn the lights on in the morning and find your fox faced rabbitfish suddenly sporting a mottled brownish pattern, don’t panic. It’s normal for some aquarium fish to lose their bright colors during the night or when they’re stressed. If your fish is okay, its yellow coloration will return soon!
Fox faced rabbitfish (Siganus vulpinus) compatibility
This is a relatively peaceful species that can thrive in an aquarium with larger tankmates because of its protective spines. This makes it a great choice for community aquariums. Shy fish might be emboldened by seeing the confident rabbitfish swimming out in the open.
Keep in mind that the fox faced rabbitfish doesn’t really tolerate the presence of other rabbitfish, unless you’ve got a bonded pair. Keep your rabbitfish solo to prevent territorial squabbles!
There is a bit of discussion about whether the fox faced rabbitfish can be considered reef safe or not. Some aquarists swear that even the most emaciated foxfaces have always left their corals alone, while others report this species nipping on corals like soft Zoanthids if it gets hungry.
Fox faced rabbitfish (Siganus vulpinus) diet
The reason so many aquarists adore this species is not just limited to its bold coloration. It’s also an absolute champion algae eater that can clear an aquarium in just a few days! Now, of course you shouldn’t buy a fish just so it can do tank maintenance for you. That’s your job! That being said, of course this species’ appetite for algae definitely makes it extra attractive.
Keep in mind that the fox faced rabbitfish won’t just feed on problem algae, but also pick off good algae. In its search for the green stuff, it might nip at corals, not necessarily intending to eat them but still stressing them out in the process.
Because our home aquarium systems don’t contain enough plant and algae matter to sustain a fox faced rabbitfish, you’ll have to supplement their diet with commercial foods meant for herbivorous fish.
Your foxface will appreciate regular feedings of fresh blanched veggies, algae tablets, nori sheets and plant-based pellet or flake foods.
A marine aquarium with beautiful, colorful fish like the fox faced rabbitfish brightens any home or office. If you’re interested in having a fish tank of your own, you can contact us here. We design, build and maintain aquariums for many happy clients!