Peppered Butterfly

Chaetodon guttatissimus

(0 Reviews)

Peppered Butterfly

Peppered Butterfly

Chaetodon guttatissimus

(0 Reviews)

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Peppered Butterfly Care Facts

Care Level:  Moderate
Temperament:  Peaceful
Diet:  Carnivore
Origin:  Indian Ocean
Acclimation Time:  3+ hours
Reef Safe:  No
Minimum Tank Size:  75 gallons
Max Size:  5 inches

The Peppered Butterflyfish (Chaetodon guttatissimus) is a beautiful butterfly found among the Indian Ocean. They inhabit reefs where they hunt for small crustaceans and coral polyps. They have a silver or golden body with black specks and a false-eye stripe. Reaching a maximum size of 5 inches, they do well in a FOWLR tank of at least 75 gallons. They are peaceful and can be kept with other peaceful fish but may become aggressive towards other Butterflies with a similar pattern or coloration in smaller tanks.

They are also not reef safe since they will nip at and eat soft corals and stony polyps as well as ornamental shrimp, tube worms and anemones. Diet should include a variety of mysis and vitamin enriched brine shrimp, spirulina, nori, seaweed, marine algae, and algae-based foods, 2-3 times daily.


The Peppered Butterfly (Chaetodon guttatissimus) - A Captivating Addition to Saltwater Marine Aquariums


Species Overview: The Peppered Butterfly, scientifically known as Chaetodon guttatissimus, is a stunning addition to saltwater aquariums. Originating from the Indo-Pacific region, this species is known for its distinctive pepper-like markings, giving it a distinct appearance that sets it apart from other marine species.


Habitat and Reef Safety of the Peppered Butterfly


In its natural habitat, the Peppered Butterfly is often found in coral-rich environments, specifically around coral reefs and rocky areas. Not generally considered reef-safe, cautious observation is recommended, as some individuals may develop a taste for coral polyps. However, the Peppered Butterfly can thrive harmoniously with proper acclimation and a well-established reef environment.


Size and Lifespan of the Peppered Butterfly


This species typically reaches 4 to 6 inches in captivity, making it suitable for various tank sizes. With proper care, the Peppered Butterfly boasts a lifespan of 5 to 7 years, providing long-term enjoyment for aquarium enthusiasts.


Diet in Captivity for the Peppered Butterfly


Feeding the Peppered Butterfly is straightforward, as it readily accepts a varied diet. Combining high-quality flakes, frozen foods, and live foods such as brine or mysis shrimp will ensure optimal health and vibrant coloration.


Aquaculture and Availability of the Peppered Butterfly


As of the latest information, Peppered Butterflyfish are not widely aquacultured. However, they are periodically available to hobbyists from reputable sources. is committed to providing sustainably sourced marine life, ensuring a responsible and ethical addition to your aquarium.


Compatibility with Other Fish and Invertebrates for the Peppered Butterfly


The Peppered Butterfly is generally peaceful but can be territorial, especially during feeding times. Compatible tank mates include species such as the Firefish (Nemateleotris spp.), Banggai Cardinalfish (Pterapogon kauderni), and Royal Gramma (Gramma loreto).


Sexual Dimorphism of the Peppered Butterfly


Sexual dimorphism in the Peppered Butterfly is minimal, with males and females displaying similar external characteristics. Close observation during courtship and spawning behaviors may be necessary to determine the sex of these fish.


Juvenile to Adult Coloration Changes in the Peppered Butterfly


Juvenile Peppered Butterflies often exhibit a more subdued coloration, with their signature pepper-like markings becoming more pronounced as they mature. The transition to adult coloration is gradual and contributes to the visual appeal of these fish in a well-maintained aquarium.


Temperament of the Peppered Butterfly


Known for their peaceful nature, Peppered Butterflies are ideal for community aquariums. However, like many butterflyfish, they may become territorial during feeding. Careful consideration of tank mates and adequate hiding spaces can help mitigate potential conflicts.


Tank Requirements for the Peppered Butterfly

  • Minimum Aquarium Size: Provide a minimum aquarium size of 75 gallons for optimal well-being. Maintain a stable environment with suitable hiding places, live rock structures, and open swimming spaces. Adequate water flow is crucial, mimicking the natural conditions of their native habitat.
  • Water Conditions:       
    • pH: Maintain water conditions within the range of 8.1 to 8.4.
    • Salinity: Keep salinity within the range of 1.023 to 1.025.
    • Water Temperature: Maintain a temperature range of 75°F to 82°F.
    • Water Flow: Provide moderate to strong water flow, replicating reef-like conditions.

Other Common Names of the Peppered Butterfly


The Peppered Butterfly may also be called the Spotted Butterflyfish or Speckled Butterflyfish.


Five Compatible Tank Mates for the Peppered Butterfly


Why Choose for the Peppered Butterfly is a reputable source for acquiring the Peppered Butterfly. With a commitment to sustainability, ethical sourcing, and excellent customer service, ensures that hobbyists receive healthy and responsibly collected marine life for their aquariums. Purchasing from provides peace of mind, knowing that your acquisition contributes to the well-being of marine ecosystems.


In conclusion, the Peppered Butterfly is a delightful addition to saltwater marine aquariums, offering captivating beauty and ease of care. Elevate your aquarium experience with this remarkable species, available at – your trusted source for quality marine life.

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