Thai fisheries department introduces unique new clownfish breed

New clownfish breed, photo by Nation Thailand.

The Thai fisheries department introduced a unique new clownfish breed. The new breed, called Gold x Thunder Maroon, is a cross between the Gold Nugget Maroon and Thunder Maroon clownfish.

Gold x Thunder Maroon clownfish have maroon-spotted white sides. They grow to a maximum length of 17 centimetres. Males of the species can reproduce at six months old, while females can reproduce at 18 months old.

The fisheries department’s director-general, Chalermchai Suwannarak, said the project to develop the new breed started in 2020. He said the department studied purebred Gold Nugget Maroon and Thunder Maroon clownfish, and then “bred them to produce a unique pattern that is passed on to the next generation.”

The breed is meant to only be an ornamental fish, and not to exist in natural water sources. They can live in aquariums, however, not with predatory fish.

The company Local Dive Thailand says its diving guides regularly find 28 known types of clownfish, four of which are located in the island province of Phuket.

The fish’s bright colours, and the way they seem to play hide and seek in their anemones, constantly amuse divers and annoy photographers. Clownfish remain fairly active at night when water oxygen levels are lower, according to the website. This means that anemones might get an extra oxygen boost.

Clownfish are important for ocean environments for many reasons. The company says that clownfish remove parasites, in addition to oxygenating anemones. Anemones with clownfish tend to be larger than those without them, the company said, suggesting that they are healthier.

Thailand News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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