As an aquarist, it’s essential to build a healthy community with the perfect balance of character, disposition, form, and size of fish species. Copperband butterflyfish is an excellent choice. This distinctive reef-dweller tropical fish is a carnivore but considered a safe addition to your aquarium.

Keeping a copperband butterflyfish is not just placing them into your fish tank; you need to identify a few care facts, diet, and breeding options. That way, you can correctly take care and create a wonderful fish community right at the comfort of your home. This comprehensive will give you a walkthrough of every vital detail you need to know.

Are Copperband Butterfly Fish Easy To Keep?

Copperband butterflyfish is one of the must-have additions to your fish tank. Its vibrant colour enhances any reef or marine tank. Though it’s nuanced care for professional hands with strict maintenance, more and more aquarists sought for the copperband butterflyfish to be part of the dream squad.

While they are carnivorous, this fish is reef safe. It’s a challenge to keep this fish due to strict diet but indeed is a must-try for every hobbyist. While some angelfish are more safe than others, copperband butterflyfish is an excellent addition for every fish tank. Before getting yourself an extra fish for your aquarium, this guide will help you find the right fish and weigh your options accordingly.

First, not all aquarist call them copperband butterflyfish, others recognize them in various names such as:

  • Beaked coral fish
  • Copperband
  • Longnose butterflyfish
  • Copperband butterflyfish
  • Long-beaked coralfish
  • Pipit
  • Orange stripe butterfly
  • Banded longsnout butterflyfish
  • Beaked butterflyfish

Once you’ve got to know them by various names, it’s time to have a closer look as to how to take care of them, including life span expectations, and proper food to keep them alive.

Facts About Copperband Butterfly Fish: Lifespan And Diet

Copperband butterflyfish is widely known for its vivid colour. But that’s not all, here’s how to get to know them better.


They have compressed body contour with an elongated beak that is similar to its body. Copperband butterflyfish has a disc-like body which is popular in wedging it’s body between the narrow rocky gaps that helps them hide from predators and larger reef dwellers.

The end side of copperband butterflyfish is similar to angelfish. There are plenty of stiff dorsal found on this fish which it uses for line of defence and at some point can cause harm to the fish if not properly handled.


Copperband butterflyfish is popular and a crowd favourite due to its characteristics. Its typical colour is golden orange but has four stripes found on each side of its body. The characteristic band has darker margins.

While its background colour is pearlescent white, the base tail has a long and dark band that runs perpendicularly. One more notable element of the butterflyfish is the false eyespot dark-colour. This spot has a darker colour compared to the eyes and found on the dorsal fin.

When the copperband ages, it’s colour matures too and varies in intensity and tone. Aside from ageing, pigmentation changes can be a great sign of illness and stress.


Typically, copperband butterflyfish grow up to 8 inches or 20cm with their natural ocean habitat. However, if you keep this fish into a reef tank, it grows smaller in size. It can only achieve about half its size once you keep it indoors.


The level of love you give your fish helps them live longer. Generally, copperband is challenging to take care of. That is why several butterflyfish don’t live long under the care of neglectful and inexperienced aquarists.

With optimum care, disease, diet, and care maintenance, including water conditions, you’ll expect your copperband butterflyfish to live more than a decade (10 years) if well-cared and maintained. Most experienced aquarists can maintain their copperband butterflyfish longer.

If you purchased an ill copperband butterflyfish, chances are, if not taken care effectively, it will die of significant stress instead of hunger.


While they are born carnivorous, as an aquarist, you can train your fish to eat an algal-based diet. On natural habitat, this fish feast on diverse sea organisms like:

  • Seaweed
  • Algae
  • Worms
  • Shrimp
  • Sea anemones
  • Plankton
  • Sponges
  • Corals

While it’s a challenge to feed and transition them from various foods, providing a more comprehensive option for food available inside the aquarium is essential. Keeping your fish appetite increases size plus adds the capability to avert illnesses.

You can increase diet option and include these food suggestions in your reef tank:

  • Blackworms
  • Mussels
  • Clams
  • Brine shrimp
  • Frozen Mysis shrimp
  • Worms

Establishing food selection takes time, but once your fish gains confidence with what you give, you can start adding new food options into the fish tank. Before giving any live or frozen food to your fish, ensure you treat it with metronidazole to avoid disease transmission to your fishes.


Taking care of copperband butterfly fish can be a challenge, but once you learn the fundamental elements of proper care and maintenance, it will be easier for you to take care of this fish. It will also improve their health and lifespan. While it seems challenging at first, expert aquarists strive to learn every angle suitable for the marine life on their fish tanks.