Fish, Tanks and Ponds

Fish, Tanks and Ponds
A comprehensive guide to fish

Amphiprion nigripes

Maldives clownfish

Saddle back clownfish, Amphiprion nigripesSaddle back clownfish, Amphiprion nigripes
Photos by Andy Rapson


Amphiprion: Greek, amphi = on both sides + Greek, prion, -onos = saw

General Notes:

They are safe with corals and inverts. The are fairly quiet fish but they will defend their territory against other similar species of fish. Do not keep them with more boisterous and aggressive fish.

Wild caught Maldives Clownfish are rare in captivity because they have poor survival rates upon shipping.  In the wild they host in Heteractis magnifica.

Omnivore: They will accept fresh, frozen, flake, and freeze dried foods. A good variety of meaty and vegetative foods should be fed to them. Ideally they should be fed small amounts of food a couple times a day

Females are larger than males when adult, however the males are closer in size to females than other species of clownfishes.

Breeding these fish is now done on a commercial scale. Clownfish of all types have been bred by hobbyists but due to their very small size they remain difficult to raise. Rotifers are the ideal first food and you can buy rotifer cultures for this.  The larvae are sensitive to strong light.

The status of wild populations has not been evaluated.

Information at a glance

pH: 8.2 - 8.4
dGH: 8 - 12
Salinity: 1.021 - 1.025
Temperature: 24 - 28°C (76 - 82°F)
Diet: Omnivore
Size: 8.5cm (3 in)
Min tank size: 150 litres
Difficulty level: Intermediate
Aquarium type: Reef
Swimming level: All levels

Distribution and habitat

distribution map for Saddle back clownfish, Amphiprion ephippium

Origin: Maldives, Sri Lanka, Western Indian Ocean

Habitat: They inhabit a small limited range in the oceans.  Adults are found in small groups on the edges of the reef system.


Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Family: Pomacentridae
Genus: Amphiprion
Species: A. nigripes Regan, 1908

Common name:
Maldives clownfish, Blackfinned anemonefish

Synonyms: Lutjanus ephippium, Amphiprion calliops