Corythoichthys intestinalis

Back to the Syngnathoidea gallery

Click the image for a final, full res version

Common Name/s: Scribbled / Dragonface Pipefish
Maximum Adult Size: 16cm
Natural Distribution: Western Central Pacific: Borneo to Samoa, north to Marshall and Mariana Islands, south to Rowley Shoals and New Caledonia; throughout Micronesia
Depth Range: 20 – 68m
Species Notes & Captive Care Notes: Hailing from the Western Central Pacific, this attractive and intriguing species can be hard to identify to species level due to similarity in appearance with the 20+ other species in the genus. Also known as the Messmate or Snake Pipefish, the Dragonface Pipefish inhabits shallow sand or rubble patches on coral reef flats and lagoons, and sometimes on seaward reefs at depths of 20 – 68m. Growing to around 16cm, this species requires a tank of around 200 litres or more in captivity. Unlike those already mentioned, this is more of a ‘crawling’ species which rarely moves far from the substrate. The greatest challenge is in feeding as this species feeds almost exclusively on swarming benthic copepods in the wild and rarely transitions onto frozen foods. In captivity, providing a refugium, live rock (particularly rubble) and low flow conditions may encourage the presence of such food items, but maintaining these populations can extremely challenging. The availability of live copepod cultures could be considered though, in tandem with a constant feeding system or a dip tube. It should be noted that the survival rate for this species is very poor in captivity and most are ‘wild caught’.

References / Further Reading:
IUCN page with zoomable range map

Please Post Your Comments & Reviews