Species group: Parrotfish
Other common names: Orange Spot Parrotfish, Orange-Blotch Parrotfish
Scientific name: Chlorurus bowersi
These Parrotfish spin a cocoon around their body by secreting a thick coat of mucus as a sort of sleeping bag. They sleep in these slimy bubbles that hide their scent and protect them from infection by parasites. This protects them in the wild from nighttime predators like Moray Eels, which hunt with their sense of smell. This needs to be filtered in order to maintain hygiene in the aquarium.
In the wild, they are found continuously roving and grazing stony corals, gnawing and scraping at dead coral substrates for their algal growth, and excreting copious amounts of fine coral sand in the process. In tanks with limited grazing area, this activity is greatly restricted, which reduces the Parrotfish vitality.
They use their parrot-like beak to rasp algae from coral and other rocky substrates and in captivity, their teeth may get overgrown because of the lack of material to wear down their teeth. Due to these shortfalls, it may be difficult to keep them in aquariums. In the wild, they move around individually. They have a non-competitive nature so they must not be mixed n the aquarium with aggressive, food-greedy species like large Basses and Damsels.
The Bower’s Parrotfish is comparatively a smaller Parrotfish. It has large cycloid scales on its body. The males have an orange area while the females look similar but lack the orange. They are brightly colored fish with even the fins having alternate horizontal stripes of yellow and blue.
The Bower’s Parrotfish has a peaceful temperament but is difficult to maintain under typical aquarium conditions.
The Bower’s Parrotfish requires a 125-gallons aquarium with plenty of swimming room. The aquarium is provided with live rock, hard corals, and mature algae growth for the Bower’s Parrotfish to graze on. Skeletons are acceptable. The Bower’s Parrotfish will eat algae off the corals and rocks, and chew on the hard corals to eat the animals within. They must be provided a suitable hiding and sleeping space like a nice coral or base rock cave with low illumination.
Vigorous circulation and filtration are required because Parrotfish are avid eaters and prodigious producers of body mucus, especially the species that spin their nightly sleep cocoons. Krill, shrimp, clams, mussels and the like in their shell can be given to supply their calcium intake and to wear down their teeth. These foods can be placed at the top of their habitat; for example, a coral or a rock since this is where Parrotfish feed on the reef.