Clark’s Anemonefish

The Clark’s Anemonefish (Amphiprion clarkii) is a tropical marine (saltwater) fish in the Pomacentridae family of clownfish and damselfish. It is also known as the Yellowtail Clownfish.

The Clark’s Anemonefish has an oval-shaped, flat, compressed body. It is vivid black with white and yellow stripes. The black areas become wider with age. It has two vertical white bands, one behind the eye and one above the tail. The dorsal (back) fins are orange-yellow. 

It grows to about 12 centimetres (5 inches) in length.

It is native to the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean, as well as the Red Sea. It lives among sea anemones, but it is not affected by their stinging tentacles. The anemone protects the Clark’s Anemonefish from pedators.

The Clark’s Anemonefish prefers warm tropical waters in shallow, sheltered coral reefs and lagoons. 

It is diurnal, active during the day. It is omnivorous, eating algae, plankton, worms, and small crabs.

It lives in groups, headed by the most aggressive female. 

It is oviparous. The female lays about 500 eggs, which hatch after 6-8 days. The young fish, called fry, can swim freely after hatching. 

The Clark’s Anemonefish, like all clownfish, is a sequential hermaphrodite. This means that it starts its life as a male, and when it is mature (an adult), it becomes a female.

Location of photographs: Sea Life London Aquarium, England 

Photographer: Martina Nicolls


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