Very similar to its cousin the Banggai cardinal, the pajama cardinal (also called “PJ”) is found in a much greater range throughout the western Pacific, whereas the Banggai is limited to one group of islands. Fortunately, the pajama cardinal also is a male mouthbrooder, and breeding is very easy to induce in this fish. Raising this fish is quite easy as well.
As the large size of its eye indicates, the pajama cardinal prefers to hang out under ledges and in crevices. The more appropriate hiding places you provide it with, the more comfortable it will feel and the more time it will spend out in the open. This fish is very peaceful and does best in either a reef tank (as long as there are no small shrimp they might be tempted to devour) or with other peaceful fish. Feeding this fish is no problem whatsoever, as it will take any meaty foods such as brine shrimp, Mysis shrimp, or diced shrimp and fish. Because this cardinal is fairly nocturnal, make sure it gets some food right as the lights go out at night.
Even though the pajama cardinal is plentiful in the wild, buying captive-raised fish is much preferred. Used to aquarium conditions and prepared foods, the captive-raised fish is hardier and will not put any pressure on the wild stock.