Domino Damsel (Dascyllus trimaculatus)
- Care Level: Easy
- Temperament: Aggressive
- Diet: Omnivorous
- Reef Safe: No
- Minimum Tank Size: 30 gallons
- Max Size: 3 inches
- Water Parameters: pH 8.1-8.4, Salinity 1.020-1.025, Temperature 74-82°F
Domino Damsel (Dascyllus trimaculatus) – Saltwater Aquarium Guide
The Domino Damsel, scientifically known as Dascyllus trimaculatus, is a popular choice for saltwater aquarium enthusiasts. This comprehensive guide will provide you with all the necessary information you need to know about this species to successfully care for it in your aquarium.
The Domino Damsel is native to the Indo-Pacific region, including the Red Sea, and can be found in shallow coastal waters, coral reefs, and lagoons. They prefer areas with plenty of hiding spots such as caves, crevices, and coral heads.
The Domino Damsel is not considered reef safe. They can nip at and potentially damage corals, especially smaller polyps. Therefore, caution should be exercised when keeping them in a reef tank.
The Domino Damsel reaches a maximum size of around 3 inches (7.6 cm) in length.
These damsels are known for their aggressive nature. They can be territorial and may exhibit aggressive behavior towards other fish in the tank. It’s important to provide them with enough space and suitable tankmates to minimize aggression.
Distinguishing between male and female Domino Damsels is challenging as they have similar appearances and coloration. Sexual dimorphism is not easily noticeable in this species.
The average lifespan of a Domino Damsel in captivity is around 5-8 years, but with proper care and a suitable environment, they can live even longer.
Diet in Aquariums
The Domino Damsel is an omnivorous species. In the wild, they feed on small crustaceans, zooplankton, and algae. In aquariums, they should be provided with a varied diet consisting of high-quality flakes, pellets, frozen foods (such as brine shrimp and mysis shrimp), and occasional seaweed or algae supplements.
When setting up the aquarium for Domino Damsels, it’s essential to provide plenty of hiding spots and caves. Adding live rock formations with crevices and coral heads mimics their natural habitat and gives them suitable places to establish territories and retreat when needed.
Captive Bred Availability
Yes, the Domino Damsel is commonly available as captive-bred specimens. Captive-bred individuals are generally hardier, acclimatize better to aquarium conditions, and have a lower impact on wild populations compared to wild-caught counterparts.
Compatibility with Other Fish, Invertebrates, or Corals
Due to their aggressive nature, Domino Damsels are best kept with other aggressive or semi-aggressive fish species. They can be territorial and may harass or chase smaller or more peaceful tankmates. Suitable tankmates for Domino Damsels include:
- Clownfish – Clownfish are known to establish symbiotic relationships with anemones and are generally compatible with Domino Damsels.
- Damselfish – Some other damselfish species, like the Sergeant Major Damsel or the Blue Devil Damsel, can be suitable companions for Domino Damsels.
- Tangs – Tangs, also known as surgeonfish, are generally fast swimmers and can tolerate the Domino Damsel’s territorial behavior.
- Wrasses – Certain wrasse species, such as the Six Line Wrasse or the Cleaner Wrasse, can make good tankmates for Domino Damsels as they occupy different niches in the aquarium.
- Gobies – Some gobies, like the Yellow Watchman Goby, can coexist well with Domino Damsels as they are peaceful and often occupy different areas of the tank.
It’s important to carefully monitor the interactions between tankmates and be prepared to separate them if aggression becomes an issue.
Other Common Names
The Domino Damsel is also commonly known as the Three-spot Damsel or the Three-spot Humbug.
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Popular Questions about the Domino Damsel (Dascyllus trimaculatus) in Saltwater Aquariums:
Q: Can Domino Damsels be kept in a reef tank?
A: While they can be kept in a reef tank, caution should be exercised as they may nip at and potentially damage corals, especially smaller polyps.
Q: How large do Domino Damsels grow?
A: Domino Damsels reach a maximum size of around 3 inches (7.6 cm) in length.
Q: What should I feed my Domino Damsel in the aquarium?
A: Domino Damsels are omnivorous and should be provided with a varied diet consisting of high-quality flakes, pellets, frozen foods, and occasional seaweed or algae supplements.
Q: Can Domino Damsels be kept with peaceful tankmates?
A: Due to their aggressive nature, it’s generally recommended to keep Domino Damsels with other aggressive or semi-aggressive fish species to minimize potential conflicts.
Q: Are Domino Damsels available as captive-bred specimens?
A: Yes, Domino Damsels are commonly available as captive-bred specimens, which are generally hardier and have a lower impact on wild populations compared to wild-caught individuals.