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Old 12-04-2007, 07:13 AM   #1
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Beautifal madnarin fish not eating

Hey,
As i was trading my yellow belly damsel in today(he was bullying other fish too much) when i spotted a mandarin fish which i couldn't not buy.(it wasn't an impulse buy) I didn't notice he had a sunken belly when i bought him. I saw an article an this fish and i know its a very fussy eater and will almost only accept live food. i tried him on some frozen brine shrimp which literately touched his mouth but he wasn't interested. anyone have experience of feed this species or know what they most like?

He was priced at $49 aus dollars but they were having a sale 30% marine fish and i had a discount from traded in fish so it was $29 aus.

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Old 12-04-2007, 08:11 AM   #2
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Unless you've got plent of pods and a decent amount of rock work -- and a mature tank, he'll likely starve to death. Slowly, but surely.

Mandarins are not recommended for tanks less than a year old, as the population of pods would have time to establish and multiply.

I've heard one can by pods.
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Old 12-04-2007, 10:59 AM   #3
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I agree, try soaking his food in some garlic guard, that might help to stimulate his eating.
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Old 12-04-2007, 02:24 PM   #4
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How big is your tank?
How many pounds of LR do you have?
How long has your tank been running?

Mandarins usually consume a vast number of copepods, amphipods, and other "pods" daily. They are extremely difficult to wean onto frozen or processed foods, and many mandarins will never accept anything but live pods. This is why they are considered expert level fish and are thought to best thrive in large, mature systems with copious live rock.

There are online retailers in the US that sell amphipods and copepods, but that gets expensive if you don't have a place for them to reproduce (refugium, large tank with a pod pile, etc.).

Can you still return it to the lfs for store credit?
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Old 12-05-2007, 04:15 AM   #5
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90l tank, hes about 2cm long. alot of live rock. but 2day i managed to get him to have a go at some frozen brine shrimp. i think he will be alright
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Old 12-05-2007, 08:11 AM   #6
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How old is your tank?
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Old 12-05-2007, 02:42 PM   #7
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It will be next to impossible to keep that fish alive in a 90l (20 gal) tank. Mandarins eat constantly. They are always looking for live food in the form of copepods and amphipods. They eat them by the hundreds.

You can try feeding it some fish roe. Brine shrimp is not very nutritious. These fish are very slow, picky eaters. They do not chase after food, but only eat what is right in front of them. Turn off the water flow if you target feed mysis so it doesn't blow around.

Please try to find that fish a proper home before it starves to death.
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Old 12-06-2007, 12:26 AM   #8
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I tried a mandarin in a 4mo old 29g w/lr... poor guy lasted about 2wks. Wish i would have done some research. live and learn, now i know.
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Old 12-10-2007, 09:21 AM   #9
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I guess some of us really don't learn until the fish dies. Sounds like that's where this is headed. I've been there, but not with a mandarin.

29g tank. Well..... just try to watch his belly sink in and consider taking him back before he starves to death.
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