Fairy/Pygmy Basslets (Grammidae)

Fairy And Pygmy Basslet Family Characteristics:

The Basslets is a small group of fish that are confined to the Caribbean. To date there are only a few species known: the ever popular Royal Gramma, the Black-Cap Gramma, and the very rare Gramma linki.

In contrast with their closely related cousins, the Pseudochromids, these fish are shy and secretive. They spend most of their lives within the maze of reef crevices and are highly territorial in nature. They lead largely solitary lives, coming together only at breeding times. The Royal Gramma (Gramma loreto), although often aggressive with its own kind, has been regularly spawned in the aquarium.

Diet And Feeding:

The wild diet of Fairy Basslets is largely made up of drifting planktonic animals and crustaceans. Most frozen and live marine foods are accepted within the aquarium. The Royal Gramma may also accept flake foods. Gramma melacara will need a little more care and may need to be tempted with live brineshrimp and Mysis initially.

Aquarium Behavior:

The Black Cap Gramma is highly territorial and may not be kept with its own or similar species. The Royal Gramma may be tempted, in a large enough aquarium, to form a breeding unit of one male to several females. Approach this with care, however, as two males will fight, usually to the death.

List Of Popular Aquarium Fairy Basslets:

  • Royal Gramma (Gramma loreto)
  • Black Cap Gramma (Gramma melacara)


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