Aquarium Livestock Pet Care Guides

Damsels & Chromis


Indo-Pacific and Atlantic

Tank Temperature




Specific Gravity



Omnivorous; flakes, pellets, and frozen foods, including brine shrimp, clams, and krill; some species may eat algae like Caulerpa.


Can be aggressive and territorial; will pick on weaker fish as it ages; schooling; may be a fin-nipper if kept in a smaller tank; Chromis are usually timid and peaceful; provide plenty of hiding places and open swimming space.


Community and Coral Safe; Invert Safe with caution; best kept one to a tank or in groups of six or more. Use caution when housing with Batfish, Boxfish, Cardinals, Chromis, other Damsels, Dartfish, Hogfish, Grunts/Sweetlips, Puffers, Squirrelfish, and Wrasses. Do not keep with Anglers, Eels, Groupers, Lionfish, Scorpionfish, Seahorses, Pipefish, or Triggers.

Species Overview

Damsels and chromis both come from the Pomacentridae family, which they share with Clownfish, a close relative and another very popular group of aquarium fish. Their temperament can range from very peaceful to quite aggressive and territorial. Chromis (fish from the genus Chromis) tend to be more peaceful than the rest but can also be more delicate. Other common genuses of damsels include Amblyglyphidodon, Chrysiptera, Dascyllus, Neoglyphidodon, Pomacentrus, Stegastes and others.

These fish are generally not picky eaters. In the aquarium, they will usually feed on flakes and pellets but should also be given fresh or frozen algaes and meaty foods like brine shrimp, mysis shrimp, planktons, krill, shrimp, scallop and similar items.

Damsels can become very territorial as they become established in the aquarium. Some species will defend their territory especially aggressively; use caution when stocking the aquarium since their small sizes can be deceiving; mature or established damsels may pick on smaller or weaker fish or on new arrivals.

Some damsels retain the same appearance throughout their entire lives while others undergo a radical color change as they mature from juveniles to adults. A few may get more colorful as adults but most change from very colorful juveniles to bland, more subdued adults.

We always suggest that you do further research before adding a new pet to your tank. What we have provided for you are guidelines and suggestions. If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact our fish room at 717-299-5691 ext. 1213 or

Recommended Items

Frozen Aquarium Food
Salt Mix
Saltwater Community Food