Scat

fast facts

About Scat

Group
Brackish water
Size
Medium
Temperament
Non-aggressive
Aquarium Size
Large (50+ gal)
Swimming Region
All
Fish Water Condition
Suitable Tank Mates
Mollies, Platys, Swordtails, Green Chromides, Archerfish, Siamese Tiger Fish
Difficulty Of Care
Weekly care
General description


Also known as argus fish and spotted scats, scats are one of the most popular species of brackish water aquarium fish. They are characterized by their square shaped and compressed bodies. The scat’s dorsal fins are composed of hard rays which are mildly poisonous. The scat’s body is often silver-green or silver-brown in color and has large black or brownish-red spots.


Also known as argus fish and spotted scats, scats are one of the most popular species of brackish water aquarium fish.


Origins


Scats originate from the brackish water estuaries of Australia and Southeast Asia.


Color


Scats occur in two basic color morphs – green scats and ruby scats.


Maintenance and care

Scats are extremely peaceful and thrive when kept in large schools of 6 or more fish. Scats can however grow up to 10 inches in length when given adequate space and should therefore be raised in fairly large aquariums. Scats are highly active and enjoy aquariums with large open swimming spaces. In the wild scats inhabit mangroves and other estuaries and prefer aquariums with plenty of plants and hiding spaces. However, scats are known to eat most types of aquarium plants and some aquarists prefer to use artificial plants in the scat’s aquarium. It has been noted that Java Fern is toxic to this species of fish and should not be introduced to the aquarium.


Scats are gregarious eaters and produce a significant amount of waste. They are also extremely sensitive to nitrite levels. Therefore it is important that the scat’s aquarium has adequate filtration and that weekly water changes are carried out.


These fish are extremely peaceful and make excellent additions to most brackish water community aquariums. It is important to remember however that older scats can sometimes prey on smaller tank mates. Scats are also known to devour fecal matter of other fish hence their scientific name Scatophagus which means dung eater.


Feeding


Scats are omnivores and will readily accept most kinds of foods like flakes, algae, brine shrimp, lettuce and dried seaweed.


They are extremely peaceful and thrive when kept in large schools of 6 or more fish.


Breeding


Scats are not known to breed in captivity.


Aquarium varieties


Green Scat and Ruby Scat.


Photo credit: Joachim S. Müller/Flickr; Brian Gratwicke/Flickr

Amy Tokic
Amy Tokic

Amy Tokic, Editor of PetGuide.com, is a passionate animal lover and proud pet parent of Oscar, a Shih Tzu/Chihuahua cross, and Zed, a Japanese Chin. Her love of animals began in kindergarten, when she brought her stuffed dog Snoopy into class with her every day. Now, she writes about her adventures in pet ownership and tirelessly researches products, news and health related issues she can share with other animal enthusiasts. In her free time, Amy loves perusing used book and record stores, obsessing over the latest pet products available and chasing squirrels with wild abandon (a habit attributed to spending too much time with her pooches).

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