Scientific Name:
Centropyge loricula
Other Common Names for the Flame Angelfish:
Flame Angel - Flaming Angelfish - Japanese Pygmy Angelfish


The Flame Angelfish is found in various reefs of Oceania, most common in Marshall, Line and Cook Islands. The fish is also, although less commonly, found in the Hawaiian Islands. This hardy, vibrant angelfish is a member of the Pomacanthidae family. The Flame Angel’s is bold orange-red with a vertical elongated black spot and four or five bars on the sides, the posterior part of the dorsal, and anal fins, with alternating short purple-blue and black bands. Males of this species are usually a bit larger and have slightly brighter coloration. There can be slight variations in coloration based on where the Flame Angelfish is collected.  A Flame Angelfish can reach up to 6 inches in length and requires an aquarium of at least 70 gallons with lots of live rock for grazing and places to hide. It should be noted that dwarf angelfish are sensitive to copper. If you quarantine new fish - like you should - this fish should not be exposed to copper levels near or above 0.15ppm.


Flame Angelfish are omnivores. They spend most of their days swimming around the live rocks, grazing on algae. Flame Angels will enjoy Nori and Spirulina as well. They will accept pellet or flake foods sometimes, but for good nutrition, they also need small meaty meals like Mysis shrimp, phytoplankton, copepods, and/or prepared or frozen offerings. They could nip at snails, clams, sponges, and corals. For this reason, Flame Angels are considered to be reef safe with caution. Hobbyists have found that a well fed Flame Angel will usually not bother your corals.  


As stated earlier, a Flame Angelfish can reach up to 6 inches and requires an aquarium of at least 70 gallons. This is a rewarding fish to add for those who spend a lot of time viewing their aquarium. While they may hide when you initially add them, the Flame Angel will swim almost constantly for your viewing pleasure, picking at any algae it can find when it gets settled in. These fish are considered to be semi-aggressive. They aren’t very fast swimmers compared to other reef fish. So, their aggression is often the result of territorial disputes with other aggressive fish, especially other angelfish. A larger tank with a good amount of rockwork can deter some of these disputes. While this particular angelfish has been known to get along with other angelfish in large tanks, we don’t recommend keeping more than one unless you have experience. If you intend to keep fish, a netted lid is recommended.


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