Cardinal Soldierfish

(Plectrypops retrospinis)

Soldierfish should be added to aquariums with plenty of rockwork, cracks, crevices and caves. Soldierfish grow quite quickly so careful consideration should be made before adding to aquariums. Soldierfish are nocturnal and prefer dimly lit aquariums. Some Soldierfish are capable of making loud clicking sounds. Although quite peaceful Soldierfish are not considered reef safe as they will consume anything small enough to fit in their mouth. Soldierfish are better kept in small groups as pairs may pick at each other. Provide a diet rich in meaty based foods multiple times daily. When first introduced to the aquarium Soldierfish may not readily eat. Try providing live enriched adult Brine, Glass/Grass Shrimp or Black Worms. Avoid using nets as Soldierfish have spines on their head and gills. They also have a large preopercular spine that can inflict a painful wound.

The Cardinal Soldierfish is a species of marine fish from the family Monacanthidae, sometimes also known as Google Eyed Soldierfish. In the aquarium trade, they are not commonly seen due to their specific dietary and environmental requirements, as well as their potential for releasing a toxic substance when stressed. They are also not recommended for inexperienced fishkeepers. Cardinal Soldierfish are a brilliant orange to red color with fins somewhat paler. They can grow up to 8 inches in length.

We recommend a minimum aquarium size of 50 gallons or larger for this species.

Water conditions: Salinity 1.020 - 1.025, Temp (F) 72 - 78, pH 8.1 - 8.4, Alkalinity 8 - 12 dKH

  • Care: CareModerateModerate
  • Behavior: BehaviorAgressiveAgressive
  • Diet: DietFlake FoodFlake Food DietFrozen FoodFrozen Food DietLive FoodLive Food
  • Habitat: HabitatPlantedPlanted
  • Light: LightHighHigh