Royal Gramma complete guide

Royal Gramma Care-Complete Guide

Fishkeeping is hard for beginners. But hardy fishes are great to start. Royal Gramma is a Very beautiful Hardy Fish with vibrant colors and a beautiful appearance. Unlike other beautiful fishes, Royal Gramma is very easy to maintain. Royal Gramma is also called the Fairy Basslet or Gramma Loreto. They are usually smaller in size found in the Caribbean regions. Royal Gramma is Salt Water fish living in the ocean. They are mostly found in the Coral reefs and coral beds. Larger reefs are favorite habitats for these cute little fishes. If you have a reef-like tank or building a reef-like tank setup, then you must definitely think of adding the Royal Gramma to your beautiful tanks. They are one of the favorites of saltwater fish keepers. Royal Gramma will easily stand out in a tank due to its color and vibrant nature. Grammas are so beginner-friendly that it was one of the fishes we started within our fish-keeping journey. They are simple to maintain but still, it requires some work to do. People get misguided and make poor maintenance choices for this hardy fish. If you are interested in adding this cute little salt fish to your collection or starting your fish-keeping journey, we will help you. In this blog, we will give a complete guide from Royal Gramma, how to care for them, its lifespan, tank compatibility, breeding, and much more. So, Sit Back, Relax, and enjoy the read.

Royal Gramma Overview

Royal Gramma is a hardy saltwater fish. It can be spotted with its Purple and Yellow Body. They are very beginner-friendly with less maintenance compared to other beautiful fishes. Most aquarium experts and experienced saltwater fish keepers add them to the Must Have fish list. This is because of their calm nature and resistance to a lot of diseases. They are friendly and social fishes. So, they can easily live with other fish varieties and other tank species. This is because of their calm, loving nature. They live in rocky reefs of the oceans. Royal Gramma is well known due to its purple color and can be seen as representative in many textbooks as the typical saltwater fish. Every Royal Gramma is born as a female. But the dominant ones change sex and become male fishes. Male Royal Grammas are larger than female mates and have larger ventral fins than the former.

Royal Gramma Origin Gramma is commonly called Fairy Basslet. Gramma Loreto is the scientific name. It belongs to the Ray-Fish Family (Grammatidae). They are mainly found in the Caribbean. Gramma has a range extending from Bahamas, Bermuda, Venezuela, through central America to the north of South America. They live on Corals that are 3 to 60 feet deep and can be seen swimming happily upside down. Grammas are not much stronger. So, they tend to hide and live on the clefts of reefs. Their natural habitable areas usually tend to have much stronger currents. This allows them to hide most of the time from heavier water currents. They sneak out to hunt or capture floating prey and return to hiding spots ASAP! They are very abundant in number. So, it is not listed in the red list of IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) as an endangered variety.

Royal Gramma LifeSpan

They are smaller fishes. Usually smaller fishes have a shorter life span. The Royal Gramma has an average lifespan of a maximum of 5 to 6 years. But if most care is taken, they can live many years. There are even stories about some Fairy Basslet living up to 10 years. But they are not officially verified. When proper care is not taken, they may suffer a shorter life span.Pro Tip:Make sure to take proper care of any fish in your aquarium to keep them healthier and improve their lifespan.

Gramma Loreto Appearance

Royal Grammas are a feast to viewers’ eyes. They are very popular because of their dazzling appearance. Their vibrant colors had made them world popular. We guess their appearance is the reason that brought you to this blog. They will easily stand out in any tank with any fish. This is because of their beautiful colored streamlined bodies. They are not like other beautiful fishes with awesome patterns and polka dots. Simplicity and clean rich purple color is their trademark. The front is Purple in color and the rear tails are majestic yellow shades. This makes them look like a gradient passing throughout the body. Their purple color followed by the slowly fading golden yellow always makes us mesmerize this beauty..Awe! The dominant female Grammas usually turn sex and become Male fishes. Male fishes are with more vibrant colors. This is mainly to attract their female partners during breeding. The Royal Gramma is usually confused with the Royal Dottyback (Pictichromis paccagnellae). Though they both look similar, Royal Dottybacks are more aggressive ones. But we can differentiate both the fishes with their color and outer appearance. Gramma has a blending color nature with more fading. Gramma has colored fins. But Dottybacks have clear fins and colors don’t blend and fade.

Royal Gramma Size

Royal Gramma is Short Saltwater fish. On average, Royal Gramma Grows 3 inches long. It varies on many factors. The largest captive Royal Gramma measured around 3.1 inches. Male Grammas are longer than the female mates. Genetics, tank care, and feeding also play a major role in fish’s size. If proper care is taken, you can bring the most potential out of any variety. Now let us see how to care for the Royal Gramma properly.

Fairy Basslet Care

Tropical fish Royal Gramma Basslet in Fish Tank
Maintaining them is easier and not a great challenge to handle. But still, like every other fish, they demand some basic care to take. They are straightforward when it comes to maintenance. Royal Grammas live happily and peacefully with inappropriate tank sizes and adequate water changes. They love to swim upside down as it is their nature to swim upside down in their rocky beds and coral natural habitats. But beginner fish keepers get confused with this act and consider them diseased while swimming upside down. There is nothing much to worry about. Royal Gramma care mainly focuses on the tank size, water conditions, and tank decorations for beauty.

Tank size

Royal Gramma is a saltwater fish. Even though Royal Gramma is a smaller fish growing only up to a maximum size of 3 inches, it is still a saltwater fish. Saltwater fishes live only in larger tanks. Freshwater dwarf fishes can live in tanks smaller than 5 gallons, but saltwater fishes demand at least a 30-gallon tank to grow. So, a single Royal Gramma requires tanks that are at least 30 gallons in size. When a pair of royal Grammas is grown, it would implement tanks that are at least 50 gallons in size. So, a school of few Royal Gramma can grow happily in tanks that are 100 gallons in size.Pro Tip:For every new saltwater fish added, add 20 gallons to the tank size to maintain an optimum tank atmosphere. This reduces stress and overcrowding inside the tank.Royal Grammas are jumping fishes and jump like Olympic finalists. So, to secure your fish from jumping off the tank’s edge like a pole vault, secure the tank with lids or closing tops. This will prevent these cute little thieves from getting cast in a new episode of prison break.

Water Requirements

For the 100th time, Royal Grammas are hardy fishes. But still, they must be taken care of to prevent the easy spread of diseases and infections. They are hardy souls and can tolerate a wide range of water conditions happily. But still try to maintain the water conditions within the ideal conditions for the species variety. The ideal water conditions required by royal Gramma is tabulated below

Temperature pH Level Hardness Specific Gravity
72° – 80° F 8.1 – 8.4 8° to 12° dKH 1.020 and 1.025.

Always perform regular water changes and maintain the optimum temperature, pH, hardness inside the tank to keep your fish healthier. Great maintenance will bring the maximum efficiency out of your fishes in terms of Size, Appearance, and activity out of your cute little pet fishes. It will also improve their lifespan. Some fishes had lived more than 100 years due to great care. Also, check out the Average life span of Tak Fish blog. Water quality must be checked every week to maintain the good health of the fish. It is better to perform water changes every week. 10 to 20% water change is much preferable for most aquariums. Royal Gramma likes to be in tanks with Strong flows. So, buy filters that can produce much stronger water flows. Filters with adjustable water flow are much preferable. Now let us see the decorations suitable for Royal Gramma

Tank Decoration Setup

Royal Gramma are shy fishes. They love to hide most of the time, even in their natural habitats. This is to protect them from strong streams of water current. Coral reef spots are their best places to hide in natural habitats. They spend the most time in rock beds and coral edges. Place more rocks inside the tank to give a coral reef-like experience. If more than one royal Gramma is grown, then more rocks must be added to give a longer coral reef-like experience. Few rocks can’t support them and would cause stress among these little fishes.Tank Tip Royal Gramma is usually found in deeper parts of the ocean and reefs. They are used to darker atmospheres. So, try to avoid harsh and direct lighting over the tank. Make sure to provide a larger number of rocks, cavities, and caves as hiding spots for these shy species.

Royal Gramma Compatibility

Royal Gramma usually likes to be alone in their territorial hiding places. If two Royal Grammas are added together, then the tank must be bigger enough to hold them together. Also, the tank must have enough rocky surfaces as hiding spots. When two Royal Grammas are added without more resources, they would fight with each other for rocks and territorial fights. It is necessary to have at least a 50-gallon tank to breed two royal Grammas at a time. This would be better if it is a male-female pair. It is much better to have two females rather than two males. When two male Grammas are added, it would cause a great quarrel for area acquisition. Introduce a group of Royal Gramma, having a tank of 100 gallons or bigger, and introduce them at the same time. If there are previously existing pairs, then it would cause trouble to the new tank mates. Now let us see what other species can be compatible with the royal Gramma.

Tank Mates

Royal Gramma is a social fish and will go easily with other fishes in the saltwater tank. It goes easily with fishes like 

  • Clownfish
  • Filefish
  • Gobies
  • Angelfish
  • Hawkfish
  • Rabbit Fish
  • Squirrelfish
  • Blue-green Chromis
  • Corals and other invertebrates.

Tankmates to avoid with Royal Gramma

Royal Gramma is compatible with many fishes. But there are few fish that don’t go with this beautiful dwarf. Royal Gramma is a shy and scared fish. So, they will easily be scared by larger fish. Smaller fishes will feel the stress build-up when kept with a larger fish. So, better any larger fish with Royal Gramma inside the tank. Fishes that live on rock clefts will also be not compatible with the Royal Gramma. These fishes will fight with Gramma for territories and dark spots. This would create unnecessary disputes and stress among the fish. So, better avoid fishes that take home in shady parts and rocky clefts. Some of the varieties to avoid growing together with the royal Gramma are 

  • Royal Dottybacks
  • Eels
  • Lionfish
  • Groupers
  • Other large saltwater fishes.

Avoid the above-mentioned tank mates to maintain a peaceful environment.

Behavior inside Tank

Royal Grammas are peace-loving fishes living in hiding spots and dark places. They are shy with other fishes. They usually seek protection from harsh light and strong streams by hiding in corals, rock beds, and clefts. They spend most of their time in the deeper part of the ocean. So, they will always be found at the deepest part of saltwater aquariums. They spend most of their time hiding and come out only during hunting time. They usually jump a lot from the water’s surface. Hence, it is always better to seal the fish tank with a tight lid to avoid fish escaping.

Royal Gramma Feeding

These fishes like to have a Protein-rich diet with added plants. They usually eat most kinds of ocean planktons which can be fed at home aquariums too. Grammas are Carnivores. They must be fed 3 times on average every day. Avoid overfeeding. It would bloat these small fishes and cause further complications. Their food can be pellets and frozen foods. Flakes can also be added to the diet. Add protein food to the weekly schedule to provide a balanced diet. Some of the great protein sources for feeding saltwater fishes are 

  • Frozen planktons
  • Brine Shrimp
  • Mysis Shrimp
  • Crustacean Flesh
  • Bloodworms.

When they hatch out of the eggs, the fish must be fed rotifers and copepods for a few weeks. Later they can be given shrimps for protein. This will boost up the growing speed of the fry.

Royal Gramma Common Disease

Royal Gramma usually doesn’t cause any trouble in the disease department as they are hardy fishes. But still, they must be taken care of with proper water change, enough nutrition, and proper water quality to lead a healthy lifestyle. Unlike most fishes, they love to be in strong current streams. Make sure to buy a strong filter for your Royal Gramma tanks. This is because of their natural habitat where most water streams were harsh. Harsh lighting can cause some abnormalities in these fishes. So make sure to avoid direct lighting over the Fairy Basslet tank.

Gramma Breeding

Royal Gramma can be bred easily in captivity. This happens when the male breeder starts to build a safe area for the female to lay eggs. A nest is built by these small fishes using rocks, algae, and pebbles. Female fish lay eggs over rocks and males release the sperm over them to fertilize. This is outer body type fertilization (External fertilization). Usually, the female lays 5 to 40 eggs at a time over the nest for fertilization. Fishlings develop inside the eggs in darker conditions. These eggs usually hold to rock with the help of algae and by 5 to 7 days, the eggs will hatch and cute little fishes start to swim out of the shell. You can feed the smaller grams with rotifers and copepods for a few weeks. When they become larger, you can feed newly hatched brine shrimps and powdered pellets.

Final Words For Fish Keepers

Royal Gramma is surely a beginner-friendly fish because of its hardy nature and easy-to-maintain routine. They can be fed easily and don’t require more attention like other saltwater fishes. It doesn’t require much when grown single. A bigger tank is the only concern when 2 or more Royal Gramma is grown together. Also, more rocks must be added inside the aquarium when a royal Gramma is introduced. It also goes well along with other fishes in larger tank captivity. They are beautiful and always a wonderful sight to watch. Royal Gramma is a more affordable fish with a piece pricing of just over $20 making it one of the beginner’s favorites. So, if you are a brand new fish keeper and wondering how to start your fish-keeping journey, then you can definitely go for it. Expert fish keepers will also love to have them in tasks due to their stunning beauty and very little care required. We hope this blog helped you clear doubts about royal Gramma and its maintenance. We always welcome your suggestions. Comment below your views on royal Gramma. Also, mention things that are to be changed and improved. If you liked this post do share it with your friends and family. Cause sharing is caring. See ya! Until then, keep growing your aquarium

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Royal Grammas Jump?

Many different fish species are known to jump out of the water when startled. Royal Grammas also jump higher over the water surface. At times, they may even jump over the tank and try to escape. So, it is better to have them packed under a tight tank lid. Royal Gramma loves to jump, so don’t worry when they get excited and jump a few times.

How many Royal Grammas in a tank?

Saltwater fishes are better when kept alone. This will. Help them be calm and avoid unnecessary fights for territorial dominance. As a rule of thumb, a 30-gallon tank is necessary to grow a single saltwater fish. For every one new fish added, another 20 gallons must be added. This will prevent aggression and stress among the inmates. Female fishes are less aggressive than male fishes. Never add two male fishes in a small single tank. It would cause disputes over territorial domination and habitat overtaking. Adding 2 male fishes in larger tanks will work, but still, it would cause stress among the other fish. So, it is always better to grow a single royal Gramma in smaller tanks. Limit the number up to 5 if the tank is 100 gallons or bigger.

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