Bird Families

GIRARDINUS SPOTTAIL (Phalloceros caudimaculatus)


English name: Tailspot coralblenny

Maximum length 6 cm.

The base color ranges from gray to orange and brown. The head is gray-blue. A characteristic feature is a black spot with a wide white edging at the base of the caudal fin. There are black and yellow stripes under each eye. The fins are transparent, uncolored. The mouth is small. Small thick antennae protrude between the eyes.

Western Pacific: Philippines, Indonesia.

They inhabit the sheltered coral reefs of coastal lagoons. Adults live singly or in small groups. The depth of habitat is from 2 to 30 m. Females spawn, which is fixed on the bottom with an adhesive substance. The hatched larvae lead a pelagic lifestyle and are often found in coastal areas of shallow water. They are herbivores. The basis of nutrition is algae.

Keeping in the aquarium

The complexity of the content is easy. Reef aquarium compatible. Aquariums with a volume of 50 liters or more are allowed, but for better conditions, the desired volume should be over 110 liters. It is necessary to provide for a large number of living stones with caves and crevices where fish could hide, and a sandy bottom substrate. The Exsen Spotted Dog is very demanding on water quality, therefore effective mechanical and biological filtration must be provided in combination with regular aquarium water changes. The water temperature is 22-26 degrees C.pH 8.1-8.4

The Exen Spotted Dog's diet should include plant foods, including frozen and dried foods containing seaweed and blue-green algae. Feed three times a day. Algae that grows in a well-established aquarium is a good food. Although the fish is herbivorous, minced shrimp or krill can be added to the diet for variety. It is advisable to use such additives for new fish placed in the aquarium, when they are undergoing a period of adaptation to new habitat and feeding conditions.

The Exsen Spotted Dog belongs to peaceful fish and easily gets along with many aquatic organisms of reef and fish aquariums. Does not harm corals and other coral reef invertebrates. It is territorial, and therefore can be aggressive towards fish of its own species or similar species. Such intraspecific conflicts can be avoided by increasing the volume of the aquarium. So, in aquariums over 350 liters, a small group can be kept, but it is advisable to populate them in the aquarium at the same time.

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General description

The gigantic nightjar is a relatively small bird, weighing no more than 400 g. Its body length can reach 55 cm. The color of the plumage in males and females is almost identical. Because of the unusual and terrifying head of the animal, as well as scary eyes, it is called the "messenger from hell."The bird has a short and wide beak, large wings and a long tail. Due to their short legs, nightjars look awkward.

Birds of prey are dark brown on top and rusty brown with characteristic spots and stripes on the bottom. Dark transverse stripes are visible on the tail and flight feathers.

Gigantic forest nightjar

Lifestyle and nutrition

The main feature of the gigantic nightjars is their ability to disguise themselves. Animals are so skillful in this matter that sitting on the chosen branch, they are sure of their "invisibility". The birds blend well with the branches, therefore, even coming close to them, it is not easy to see them. During disguise, the nightjars do not forget to keep an eye on everything that happens around. Even with closed eyes, animals observe the situation (they do not close their eyes completely and follow those around them through the cracks formed).

Giant nightjars prefer to rest on the dried branches of trees (this makes it easier for them to camouflage themselves). As a rule, the bird is positioned so that the head hangs past the end of the bitch. This gives the impression that the branch is longer than it actually is. During daylight hours, nightjars are very relaxed and like to sleep. At night, gigantic nightjars emit frightening screams. The sounds are like rough screams followed by howls. And if, along with the screams, you see the creepy yellow eyes of a bird, you can be frightened wonderfully. In addition, nightjars lead a very active lifestyle at night. They are agile, quick and tireless.

In fact, nightjars are not as dangerous as everyone thinks they are.Birds feed on insects because their beaks are not intended for large animals. In this regard, the birds feast on fireflies and butterflies, which is quite enough for them. On a night hunt, nightjars attack cockroaches. In addition to their eerie appearance and the frightening sounds that birds make, animals do not pose a threat to humans.


Depending on the region of habitat, birds can breed from April to December. The gigantic nightjar belongs to monogamous animals. During the mating season, the female and the male build a nest in the broken trees, after which the female lays only one egg. Parents guard the future chick in turn. When a baby is born, he already has a unique color that allows him to disguise himself in the wild, so his safety is ensured. The cub is so merged with the environment that only the shell of a white egg allows you to find it in a dark forest.

Interesting Facts

The wingspan of a gigantic nightjar can reach one meter. In some cases, the nocturnal predator feeds on small birds and bats. The animal got its unusual name because of its habit of catching insects near herds of cows, goats and sheep. Birds skilfully fly under the belly or hooves of a large mammal.