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Georgia-Pacific Cold Water Quest

Garibaldi damselfish

Garibaldi damselfish

(Hypsypops rubicundu)

The Garibaldi is the largest of the damselfish and can be found in the eastern Pacific along the coast from Monterey Bay, California, to southern Baja California and Guadalupe, Mexico. It usually can be seen on reefs near crevices, small caves and, occasionally, in and around kelp forests feeding on a wide range of invertebrates including worms, anemones, sea stars, shrimp, sponges and small shellfish.

The Garibaldi is most active during the day and retreats to a protected area at night. Being solitary in nature and fiercely territorial, it will attack large animals to drive them away. This species has an elaborate courtship ritual wherein the male prepares a nest in a red algae bed and works hard to attract a female. Once the eggs are laid and fertilized, he guards them until they hatch.

Visit our kelp forest in the Cold Water Quest gallery and meet Deepo.

Fun Facts

  • This bright orange fish is the Georgia Aquarium’s mascot, Deepo.
  • Its diet includes worms, anemones, sea stars, shrimp, sponges and small shellfish.
  • When disturbed, a Garibaldi emits a thumping sound that divers can hear.
  • A female can lay between 50 to 1,000 eggs in a nest prepared by the male.
  • This species can reach lengths of 12 to 14 inches.
  • Download full fact sheet

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