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Old 01-17-2006, 03:06 PM   #1
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Should Percula Clown's be kept in pairs?

Hey all,

I have a 29 gallon tank (In about a year we will be upgrading to a 55 gallon tank).

I currently have 1 Percula Clown (3/4-1"), 1 Yellow Tail Damsel (3/4"), 1 Copper Banded Butterfly (3"), 1 Fire Shrimp, 1 Camel Shrimp, (Thinking about adding a Small CC Starfish.) (Yes I know its a small tank, that is why within the next year we will be getting a 55gal, and within 1-2 years after that we will be building a new home with a 150+ gal inwall tank)

All the fish look great, and all have been doing great, The clown has been in the tank about 1.5 weeks, the first week he swam around, and ate with the rest. But the last few days he has pretty much stuck to a small area around a rock, and i have not seen him eating, he swims up to the food, and then turns away.

I know I have read alot about Clowns in pairs, I was wondering if it is possible that he is loanly, and curious if I should get him a partner!?

I don't want to overload the tank, I know all thease fish will get bigger, especially the butterfly, but as i understand it, all of thease fish will take years to get to their larger sizes, and by then will be in a 150+ gal tank with plenty of room.

Untill about 3 days ago, I use to feed the damsel & clown Flakes only, In the last 3 days since the copperband butterfly was added, I have been feeding Frozen Brine Shrimp, and Mysis Shrimp, All the fish & inverts have loved the shrimp, except for the clown since he hasn't been eating. I did try putting some flake in the tank incase the clown just did not like the shrimp, but even that was no go.

Thanks for the help,

-TheChad
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Old 01-17-2006, 03:58 PM   #2
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How long has the tank been up and running with fish in it?

What are the current water parameters? You really should have the water tested. Generally done for free at any LFS. Just supply them with a cup of tank water.

Have you noticed any of the fish chasing the clown?

Have you noticed if any of the shrimp are hanging around the clown a lot? Maybe even on the clown???

A photo would be great, but if one isn't available, describe the clown's overall appearance and swimming behavior. Do you see any whitish looking slothy slime on the body? Nipped fins? Any erratic swimming? Pay attention to gills, eyes, and fins. Anything abnormal? How's the fish's breathing?

Clowns do not need to have a mate. In fact, it can be quite difficult to pair clowns. There's no guarantee they are going to accept the one you decide to bring home for them. It can be harmonious or it can be all out terror for the newbie. And don't think that if nothing happens in the first 15 minutes of you watching that the male doesn't get beaten to shreds. False Percs aren't as bad as most other clowns, but they still can get hasty on one another. I've been there...done that...LOL. Some pointers to think of when looking for that potential partner....

It is much safer to introduce a female to a male. Females are larger, so look for one that is larger...and not just a tiny bit larger....you want noticeably larger. Introduce the clown when the lights are out and put some food in the tank as a distraction. Release the new clown at the opposite end of the tank as the other clown. It may be a good idea to hold off until the new tank is set and cycled. Introducing both together in a different environment eases the introduction worries. Both would be going into territory neither have established, so neither would have anything to immediately defend.

BTW...I would suggest adding frozen butterfly formula food in the feed mix for the copperband butterfly. It will help the butterfly live longer. Make sure it has sponge in the ingredients. Coral protein is very important to all butterfly fish.
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Old 01-17-2006, 11:50 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TCTFish
How long has the tank been up and running with fish in it?

What are the current water parameters? You really should have the water tested. Generally done for free at any LFS. Just supply them with a cup of tank water.

Have you noticed any of the fish chasing the clown?

Have you noticed if any of the shrimp are hanging around the clown a lot? Maybe even on the clown???

A photo would be great, but if one isn't available, describe the clown's overall appearance and swimming behavior. Do you see any whitish looking slothy slime on the body? Nipped fins? Any erratic swimming? Pay attention to gills, eyes, and fins. Anything abnormal? How's the fish's breathing?

Clowns do not need to have a mate. In fact, it can be quite difficult to pair clowns. There's no guarantee they are going to accept the one you decide to bring home for them. It can be harmonious or it can be all out terror for the newbie. And don't think that if nothing happens in the first 15 minutes of you watching that the male doesn't get beaten to shreds. False Percs aren't as bad as most other clowns, but they still can get hasty on one another. I've been there...done that...LOL. Some pointers to think of when looking for that potential partner....

It is much safer to introduce a female to a male. Females are larger, so look for one that is larger...and not just a tiny bit larger....you want noticeably larger. Introduce the clown when the lights are out and put some food in the tank as a distraction. Release the new clown at the opposite end of the tank as the other clown. It may be a good idea to hold off until the new tank is set and cycled. Introducing both together in a different environment eases the introduction worries. Both would be going into territory neither have established, so neither would have anything to immediately defend.

BTW...I would suggest adding frozen butterfly formula food in the feed mix for the copperband butterfly. It will help the butterfly live longer. Make sure it has sponge in the ingredients. Coral protein is very important to all butterfly fish.

We have our own test kit, the same kit the LFS uses. We test our water ever couple of days. Everything is at 0, and the PH was at 8.0 today, it goes between 8.0-8.2, The SG is at 1.023


All the fish look normal, including the clown. None of them have cloudy eyes, or any sort of discoloration. The rock that the clown has been hanging around, also houses the Fire shrimp. So i guess you could say the shrimp has been hanging around the clown, but definitly not hanging on him.

I have not seen any of the fish chasing each other, from time to time the damsel will dart toward the clown, but no contact is made, the clown usually just moves out of his way, this has happened less and less since the clown was introduced.


Thanks for the great info about the partnering the clowns, as well as the info for the Butterfly food. I will go to the LFS tomarrow and pick up the butterfly forumla food you suggest. I assume its safe if the others were to eat it? Is it shrimp with added stuff?

Thanks again,

-TheChad
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Old 01-17-2006, 11:55 PM   #4
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Frozen blood worms are also a great butterfly food. I would wait until you have a larger tank before adding another clown. Just make sure when you add one that they are not the same size. This will help with aggression issues.
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Old 01-18-2006, 12:10 AM   #5
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Brenden: Are the frozen blood worms just another alternative to the frozen shrimp I am feeding now, or are the frozen blood worms a necessary part of his diet for good health?

I have read a bit about he copperband butterfly, and that alot of people have had trouble feeding them, Ours eats very well, He has no problems. He seams to like the Brine Shrimp a little more than the Mysis Shrimp, but he eats both.

We just added him a couple of days ago, but he LFS also said that sometime they've had trouble getting them to eat, but this one has been very good.

Thanks,

-TheChad
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Old 01-18-2006, 12:16 AM   #6
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The frozen blood worms will greatly improve the copperbands health. It is loaded with protein(blood) and copperbands LOVE worms. Brine is a good snack but really has no nutritional value for the copperband.
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Old 01-18-2006, 12:19 AM   #7
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Brenden: Thanks for the info, I will also pick up some blood worms as you suggest.

Will the other fish also enjoy the blood worms, or should I stick with flake and brine for them?

I don't mind purchasing multiple foods for the fish, But if I can get a couple of foods that are good for all the fish, it will make feeding alot easier.

Are the any other foods i should grab while at the LFS?

Thanks,

-TheChad
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Old 01-18-2006, 09:01 AM   #8
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..or trade him in for an already mated pair. May acclimate to the community better that way. Just a guess.
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Old 01-18-2006, 12:01 PM   #9
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Well, I am happy to report that I woke up today to find our clown is swiming around the tank again. However He still isn't eating. This morning i droped in flakes, and brine shrimp, The damsel ate both, the copperband tore up the shrimp, but the clown just swam up to a few pieces of both, and then turned away.

I know if he does not eat, he will die. But I can't force him to eat.

Are there any suggestions as to what to do?

Thanks,

-TheChad
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Old 01-18-2006, 05:11 PM   #10
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have youtried soaking the food in garlic? my clowns wouldnt touch frozen food until someone suggested to soak it in garlic, now they cant get enough, always begging.
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