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Old 01-01-2013, 01:12 PM   #1
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Disappearing fish.....

Hi folks, I have a problem and I really don't know what to do. I bought and transferred a whole system with rock, fish, inverts, and corals from cl last February. The fish that I inherited are fine....I have a blonde naso tang, maroon clown, perc clown, and foxface. I have not lost any fish that I have inherited. However, every fish that I have bought has perished almost immediately.

First there were 3 chromis. They lasted about 3 days and one disappeared each night. I know chromis can die pretty easy so I thought it was just disease. I never found a dead one. Just gone. Assumed cuc just got them.

Next, watchman goby. Acclimated him very slowly by drip. Got him in the tank in the late afternoon. Seemed happy and healthy. Observed sifting and none of the other fish gave him a problem. Next day, gone without a trace.

Next, 6 line wrasse. I bought an in tank refugium to isolate him for a while so that the tank mates could get used to him. He survived in the fuge for several days. This one developed a sore that slowly got worse and he died about 4 days later. I'm not so concerned about this loss because there was a clear cause to me. He developed disease and declined over several days like you would expect with disease. It is the other mysterious disappearance of seemingly healthy fish over one night that concerns me. I suspect some sort of night time predator.

Last one just happened over night. Picked up a beautiful Solon Fairy Wrasse on Sunday. About 4 inches long he was big and looked good coming home. The tank at the lfs looked healthy and the fish looked clean, nice fin margins, no spots, good color, etc. I acclimated slowly over about 3 hours, and only transferred after SG, temp, and pH matched the display. Again, I transferred to the in tank fuge which has its own sand and a small piece of lr to hide under. He looked fine in there and he ate some pellet and mysis on Sunday. Was fine overnight in the fuge till Monday. Monday, I moved him to the main display right at lights on. I wanted him to have a full day to get to know the tank before lights out so that if there is a predator he might learn to avoid it before lights out. He was awesome all of Monday. Not overly timid. He darted in and out of lr and checked out the whole tank. Not issues with any of the other fish giving him a hard time. He ate like a hog. I did two small feelings with mysis and he was out there like a champ competing for mysis with the tang that is like twice his size. I can't believe it was disease that took him cause he showed no signs of distress let alone disease.

This morning, dead. I actually found his remains right at lights on. About 2/3 of him was in a crevice of lr being picked on by 2 scarlet hermits. One eye ball gone and no tail left.

I am really at a loss and discouraged. I have 4 fish in a 125g tank. I really want to develop this tank but I can't continue to run $40 experiments.

If its a pistol shrimp or mantis, wouldn't my clown be a goner? He is smaller than the wrasse and he has survived long term. If it is disease wouldn't there be some sign of illness before they turn up dead?

What do I do? Cooking all the lr and starting over does not sound appealing to me. I have no idea what I would do with all my corals Zoas inverts and fish if I did go that route.

Any guidance? Or has anyone ever had an experience like this?

Thanks and happy new year to all!
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Old 01-01-2013, 04:52 PM   #2
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Just put in a trap. Gonna see if I might catch a pistol or mantis. Never seen one but I do hear some clicking occasionally.
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Old 01-01-2013, 05:03 PM   #3
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Just put in a trap. Gonna see if I might catch a pistol or mantis. Never seen one but I do hear some clicking occasionally.
You hear clicking? I've seen ALOT of threads lately and people seem to think mantis shrimp right away. One is for sure. Something is for sure getting to your fish. Maybe the clown is still alive because it doesn't swim near the bottom?

If the other fish bed down in a rock or near the sand there probably an easy target for whatever is lurking in your tank.

I don't think pistol shrimp. I have one and all my inverts and fish are just fine. A mantis shrimp is a whole other ball game.

Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 01-01-2013, 05:59 PM   #4
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Yeah, the clown for sure sleeps right up at the top of the tank up near the overflow. That would protect him. The other fish like the tang and the lo sleep down at the bottom though. Wouldn't they be attacked? Or are they safe because of there size?

Do you think that I could go a whole year without seeing the bugger at all?
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:40 PM   #5
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Yeah, the clown for sure sleeps right up at the top of the tank up near the overflow. That would protect him. The other fish like the tang and the lo sleep down at the bottom though. Wouldn't they be attacked? Or are they safe because of there size?

Do you think that I could go a whole year without seeing the bugger at all?
I don't think you'd go a whole year. It would be a decent size also. You'd probably have seen it somewhere along the way....

Hope you figure it out though. It's not water conditions or anything right? You ruled all that out?

It's definitely a lurker among the tank?
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Old 01-02-2013, 01:09 PM   #6
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Well nothing on day one of trapping besides hermits and snails. I will keep trying the rest of this week.

Water quality is good. Amm 0, Trites 0, Trates 10, cal 420, Kh 9.0, Mg 1300. I don't test phosphorus but I run gfo in a reactor along with carbon.

Another note on the trapping. I am also on the hunt for a debelius reef lobster.

http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/p...555&pcatid=555

I don't think it is him but it could be. If I catch him he is going to the store or to the sump.
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