All About the Five Lined Cardinalfish

In this article, we learn about the five-lined cardinal fish. They have a white body with white tiger stripes running down their entire body, a yellow spot near the tail, and a black dot in the center. It acts as another set of eyes to help the Cardinal fish avoid predators upon attack.

They are great for beginners and can be headache-free fish for your aquarium. Whether it's a Fowlert tank or one filled with corals, these Cardinals do well in both. 

Price: The fish typically costs about $20 if you can find one. 

Tank Size: Keep them in a 55-gallon tank, as this will give them plenty of room to swim and grow in, with ample length and spots for them to hide. Typically, tanks to match their homes and oceans with lots of live rocks, caves, overhangings, and open space for them to swim around work best. 

They get more active at night. One cool thing they'll do is swim between the spines of a long spine as camouflage, so you can see how those black stripes come in handy. 

Care Leve: Easy. They are very hardy fish and tend to eat quickly from you in a tank setting. They had a fish that was just a little bit harder. 

Temprament: Semi-aggressive. They are primarily aggressive only towards other cardinal fish. If you add a group to the tank, you'll notice roughing each other sometimes, but nothing extreme.  

Reef Compatibility: Yes, that's where they reside in the wild, looking for food. You should have no issues with them messing with the corals or even inverts. 

Water Parameter

Temperature: 72-78

dKH: 8-12

pH: 8.1-8.4

Salinity: 1.020-1.025

Keep up with water changes and unique dosing (copper).

Maximum Size: They can grow up to 5 inches. But most hover about 2-3 inches. 


They are carnivores and will need meaty foods. Things like Brine Shrimp are excellent choices. You can also try pallets and flakes. 

Origin: They come from the Indo-Pacific region. 

Tankmates: It's best to keep these fish with more docile, peaceful fish that will not cause too much trouble in the aquarium.  

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