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Can You Keep A Seahorse And Clownfish In The Same Tank?

With a number of videos of seahorses going viral on social media over the last six months or so, we have definitely noticed a spike in the number of people reaching out and asking questions due to being curious about adding a seahorse to their aquarium. In addition to the popularity of seahorses increasing, clownfish are by far one of the more common marine fish for people to keep in their tanks so it is easy to see why we see so many people asking about keeping a seahorse and a clownfish together.

The main issue that we see time and time again is that people will think that clownfish are really cute and cuddly fish to keep as pets and not realise that they can be surprisingly aggressive in many situations. Thankfully, the number of people reaching out to ensure that the various species they keep in their aquarium are all suitable with each other and it’s great to see responsible fishkeepers.

We have seen a number of questions about keeping clownfish and seahorse in the same aquarium as each other recently so we wanted to answer them all in this article. It should make the article as helpful as possible to our readers as it will provide the answer to the more common questions all in the same place making them easier to find as there is some cross over between the three main questions and their answers. Our table of contents below should make it as quick and easy as possible to navigate the article though allowing you to skip to specific sections with ease.

Can You Keep A Seahorse And Clownfish In The Same Tank?

Some people do keep seahorses and clownfish in the same aquarium as each other without issue but it is generally not recommended for a few reasons. The two main issues is that a clownfish can be aggressive to its tank mates in different situations and clownfish will often be much quicker to the food you add to the tank and eat the food before your seahorses get to have any.

If you have a female clownfish then the aggression towards the tank mates should be much lower as the clownfish has already established itself as the dominant fish in the tank and transformed to a female. Male clownfish are still trying to establish dominance so they can be more aggressive towards their tank mates including the often docile and slow-moving seahorses that you are considering as potential tank mates.

That said though, some people do manage to keep seahorses and clownfish in the same tank and don’t have issues so it can definitely be done. You will have to factor in that it will take more time to feed your seahorses as you will often have to use something like a feeding tool to help ensure that the seahorses get fed without the clownfish and other tank mates eating all of the food.

Do Clownfish Eat Seahorses?

Clownfish do not eat seahorses but it can be common for them to chase seahorses and nip them in certain situations. Some fish keepers do try to make sure that their aquariums are much larger than they should be to reduce the chances of aggression from their clownfish to their tank mates but there is still no guarantee.

Clownfish tend to like to host something in their tanks too like an anemone with most clownfish often considering that their territory that they will protect. As seahorses are usually pretty docile and will just work their way around your tank depending on the water flow, they can commonly get into areas of your tank that your clownfish may consider to be theirs triggering the clownfish to chase the seahorse away.

This can result in your clownfish nipping your seahorse and although it may look like your clownfish is trying to eat your seahorse, it is just nips to try and assert dominance. You will have to factor in the specific species of clownfish and seahorse that you have too though as smaller seahorse species can be eaten by larger clownfish species, especially the female clownfish that tend to grow to a much larger size.

Will Clownfish Be Aggressive To Seahorses?

There are a number of reasons that your clownfish may end up being aggressive to your seahorses and once your clownfish has perceived your seahorses as a potential threat, it may act aggressively towards your seahorse each time it gets too close. It can be surprisingly difficult to discourage aggression in your clownfish too and can be a pain for many fish keepers who have a particularly aggressive clownfish.

We actually have a dedicated article going over how to deal with aggressive clownfish due to seeing so many people having problems with their own clownfish in their tanks. The short version of that article is that the best option is to often just separate the clownfish from whatever it is being aggressive towards due to it being such a pain to prevent their aggression.

As you don’t know if you will have a particularly aggressive clownfish or a relatively placid one when purchasing it, the best path to take is often just not to risk it. If you only have one aquarium and will not be able to separate your clownfish from your seahorses if the clownfish are aggressive to it then we would simply not risk it.

Conclusion

That brings our article going over keeping a seahorse and a clownfish in the same aquarium as each other to an end. Although it can work and some fish keepers have been able to successfully keep their seahorses in the same tank as a clownfish, it is usually not as easy as many people presume and can result in problems. If you are a beginner fish keeper like the majority of our readers then we would just recommend against even trying it.