Centropyge loricula

Listed tank sizes are the minimum
Size: 5" (15cm)
Tank: 36 inches
Position in tank: Middle
PH: 8.2 to 8.5
Specific Gravity : 1.020-1.025
Temperature: 22-26°C


Common Name:

Flame Angel



The Flame angelfish is one of the most popular species of dwarf angelfish and is known to adapt well to a life in an aquarium.



The Flame angelfish is found in the Pacific Ocean, mainly in tropical environments.



The Flame angelfish is bright orange-red and decorated with a vertical elongated black blotch and 4 to 5 bars on the sides. (If your fish hails from the Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia, it will not have any vertical black bars.) The posterior part of the dorsal and anal fins sport alternating short purple-blue and black bands. The fins have blue tips, and the tail is yellow or white.



The aquarium must include plenty of suitable hiding spots. Strong water flow is recommended. Include live rock in the set-up and encourage natural algae growth.

The Flame angelfish can act territorial and aggressive towards other dwarf angels, and it is also known to sometimes bully smaller fish. To reduce the risk of violence, let the Flame angelfish be one of the last fishes that you add to the aquarium. Also keep in mind that a crowded aquarium will increase the risk of violence, bullying, nipped fins etcetera. If you absolutely must keep more than one dwarf angel in the aquarium, use aquarium decorations to create several territories. It is safer to house it with other types of fish, e.g. damsels, tangs and blennies.

The Flame angelfish is known to chew on anemones and feather dusters.

The Flame angelfish is normally infested with potentially dangerous protozoans when it is sold to aquarists and it is advisable to treat it with freshwater dips and keep it quarantined before you add it to your aquarium. In some cases, formalin or some other remedy will be required to handle the problem. In the aquarium, the Flame angelfish will appreciate the aid of cleaning species, such as cleaning shrimps and cleaning gobies, to fend off parasites


The Flame angelfish feeds primarily on algae in the wild, but it will also ingest meaty foods and should be kept on an omnivore diet in the aquarium. Use algae and algae based foods as staple food and supplement with occasional servings of meaty foods, e.g. brine shrimp and mysid shrimps. It is important to keep the diet varied, e.g. by combining fresh marine algae, dried marine algae, spirulina, angelfish preparations, and algae based flakes or pellets rich in vitamin C.  Include plenty of live rock in the set up and encourage natural algae growth.

Feed your Flame angelfish many small portions throughout the day instead of just one or two big meals.

If your Flame angelfish refuses to eat or eat less than it should, check the water quality. Promote natural algae growth in the aquarium, serve fresh algae (preferably growing on a rock) and try to entice the fish with a freshly opened shellfish placed near a favourite hiding spot. Also investigate if there might be a lot of aggression in the aquarium; turf wars can make fish stop eating.


The Flame angelfish is an egg-laying species that forms harems consisting of 3-7 individuals. Just like most other known species of dwarf angel, it is a synchronous protogynic hermaphrodite. The offspring develops into females, and each female is capable of changing into a male if she receives the right combination of size and social stimuli. The male fish will typically be larger and more brightly coloured than the females. 

The spawning typically takes place at dusk. The fish will “dance” a bit before swimming up towards the surface. Eggs and sperm are released into the water and swept away by current. The eggs are buoyant and will develop while drifting around in the ocean.

Flame angelfish has been successfully reared in aquariums, but is considered a difficult species to breed. Keeping the offspring alive into adulthood is especially hard.