Gramma brasiliensis is known under several different common names in English, such as Brazilian Gramma, Brazilian Basslet, and Brazilian Royal Gramma. The fish commonly referred to as Royal Gramma is not Gramma brasiliensis, it is the closely related Gramma loreto.
Gramma brasiliensis has not been evaluated for the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Geographical, habitat and habits
The Brazilian Gramma is endemic to Brazil and can only be found in the Brazilian part of the Southwest Atlantic, from 8°S to 23°S. This species is found along the mainland coast as well as around oceanic islands. Its habitat consists or coral reefs or rocky bottoms and its depth range is 3-22 meters / 10-72 feet. The Brazilian Gramma lives alone or in small groups consisting of less than five individuals. It likes to hide under ledges and can be seen swimming upside down with its attention focused on the ledge above.
Size and appearance
The largest scientifically measured Brazilian Gramma was 6.6 cm / 2.6 in.
The Brazilian Gramma looks very similar to its close relative the Royal Gramma (Gramma loreto), but the purple and yellow colours of the Brazilian Gramma merge with each other less sharply than in the Royal Gramma.
Brazilian Gramma care
The Brazilian Gramma is easy to care for and is hardier than the Royal Gramma. It is generally peaceful, but more territorial than the Royal Gramma and this must be taken into account when you plan your aquarium. The Brazilian Gramma will typically claim a favourable hiding spot and defend it from other creatures. It is also known to act aggressively towards other members of the family Grammatidae.
It is not advisable to house Brazilian Gramma in an aquarium smaller than 20-25 gallons / 75-96 litres. Include hiding spots, e.g. caves and ledges in the set up. If you want to keep a small group, the aquarium should be of at least 75 gallons / 285 litres unless it is a compatible pair. If you wish to obtain a compatible pair, the easiest method is usually to purchase one large fish and several small specimens and house them together. Keeping more than one male per tank is not advisable, unless it is a huge and cleverly decorated aquarium.
The Brazilian Gramma is considered reef safe and is often kept in reef aquariums. It will however happily eat small shrimps.
Feeding Brazilian Gramma
In the wild, the Brazilian Gramma feeds on planktonic organisms, chiefly zooplankton, that drift around in the water. It can also remove parasites from other fishes, e.g. from Chromis multilineata and Haemulon plumieri.
In the aquarium, the Brazilian Gramma will typically accept live, fresh, frozen and dry foods. Keep it on a varied meaty diet, e.g. by giving it brine shrimp, mysis shrimp, krill, plankton and chopped crustacean flesh. Adding high quality vitamin-enriched pellets suitable for marine carnivores to the diet can also be beneficial.
Breeding Brazilian Gramma
We do not have any information about breeding Brazilian Gramma in aquariums.