Lawnmower Blenny
(Salarias fasciatus)

In this edition of Species Spotlight we will be taking a look at the Lawnmower Blenny.

The Lawnmower Blenny also known as the Jeweled Rockskipper, Sailfin Blenny, Algae Blenny or Rock Blenny is native to the shallow coastal habitats of the Indo and Pacific Oceans and is a much-loved fish for the aquarium despite its rather bland appearance. The colors of the Lawnmower Blenny range from brown to tan to white in a molted pattern.  This pattern helps them blend in with the rock and substrate. It is often chosen as a pet due to its big bulgy eyes and comical actions make it a fun fish to observe.

The lifespan of the Lawnmower Blenny is roughly 4 to 6 years in the wild, but this can be increased slightly in an Aquarium if given optimum conditions. Lawnmower Blennies grow between 4 and 6 inches in length. 
To be successful with the Lawnmower Blenny you will need at least a 30-gallon aquarium with plenty of live rock for grazing and perching. The Lawnmower Blenny is very peaceful by nature, but it may not get along with other similar looking fish, that is something to keep in mind when stocking your tank. You will also need a secure fitting lid as the lawnmower Blenny is able to jump long distances. 

This Blenny is a peaceful addition to your marine aquarium as it spends most its day scraping material (algae, detritus, sponges, etc.) off the hard surfaces in the tank with their flexible jaws and comb like teeth. This blenny depends on algae in the tank to graze, if your tank does not naturally provide enough algae it can be provided by the addition of seaweed or flake food to supplement their diet. The Blenny consuming the algae and detritus, as well as its peaceful demeanor making it a great addition to most tanks. Lawnmower Blennies do not pose a threat to corals or clams, however they may occasionally nip at other blennies or fish with similar shapes. 

The Lawnmower has been successfully bred in captivity, though it is not readily available as a captive breed specimen at of when this was written. Like many other marine fish it is difficult to tell males and females apart. It is said that the males are a bit larger and there may be small differences in the anal fins for a keen-eyed observer. The females lay eggs by attaching them to a rock, shell, or other hard surface. This can be done whether there is a male present to fertilize them or not.

The Lawnmower Blenny is an all-around great addition to many Marine and Reef Aquariums. This peaceful fish not only adds to the character of the tank but also assists in keeping the tank free of nuisance algae.