By Bob Goemans
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Heniochus chrysostomus

Cuvier, 1831

Threeband Bannerfish, Hi Fin Heniochus, Brown-and-White Heniochus, Pennant Bannerfish

Not Reef Tank Suitable

Likely Fish-Only Tank Suitable

Range: Indo-West Pacific Ocean: Western India to the Pitcairn Group, north to Southern Japan, south to New Caledonia.

Size: 7 inches (18 cm)

Natural Environment: Inhabits lagoons, reef flats, fore-reef slopes where there is dense coral growth and occurs at depths between 3 to 130 feet (1 – 40 m) and feeds mainly on soft and stony coral polyps, along with worms, small crustaceans, snails, and various other benthic invertebrates.

General Husbandry: Quite attractive, somewhat hardy and common in the trade, having a white body with two large black slightly diagonal bands, with one through the eyes, yellow snout, clear caudal and dorsal fins, and black pelvic fins.

Best maintained in larger peaceful fish-only aquariums, especially those with lots of open swimming space, and having lots of live rock to browse. As to diet, may be somewhat difficult to get feeding, therefore, beginning with live enriched brine shrimp and live black worms (Lumbriculus variegatus) should first be tried and offered several times daily. Once feeding regularly various frozen meaty foods such as mysis and enriched brine shrimp can be offered.

Should there be a problem getting this species to feed, small human consumption clams/black mussels purchased in local grocery stores and placed on the half-shell in the aquarium may help entice it to begin feeding.


    Order: Perciformes

    Suborder: Percoidei

    Family: Chaetodontidae

    Genus: Heniochus

FYI: Can be maintained with others its genus, or as a mated pair.

Pressing some soft foods into openings/crevices on a piece of old dead coral skeleton can sometimes encourage finicky eaters to begin feeding.

Experience Level: Intermediate

Temperament: Peaceful

Diet: Carnivore

Coral Safe: No

Invertebrate Safe: No

Acclimation Time: 30 minutes+

Aquarium Environment: Fish-only aquarium

Tankmates: Peaceful or non-aggressive

Minimum Tank Size: 75 gallons

Temperature Range: 72 - 82°F (22 – 28°C)

Specific Gravity: 1.020 -1.026

pH: 8.0 - 8.5

 Heniochus chrysostomus (Threeband Bannerfish, Hi Fin Heniochus, Brown-and-White Heniochus, Pennant Bannerfish)
Photo © Bob Fenner
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