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Old 09-15-2011, 01:14 AM   #1
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White Ribbon Eel in a 29 gallon tank!?!

I was at my LFS and I'm finally stocking my 29 gallon Nano Cube HQI. (waited a year to put anything in there but LR) I asked the employee to show me any fish with bright colors or unique fish that I could have in the tank. He immediately grabbed me and took me over to this tank...All there was was 2 Blue Damsels and a Rock (about 6 inches long).

He goes: You can't see it now but there is a White Ribbon Eel in there!

I respond: I thought eels were too big for a 29 gallon tank.

He responds: No I have one in mine and it has been fine for over a year now! They can get up to 40" but it probably won't get that big. They are so thin and stay curled up that it will be fine in your tank.

I respond: Aren't they really hard to feed.

He responds: No watch this! Grabs a shiner drops it in the tank and nothing happens for about 30 seconds...Then BAM the eel somehow curls out of this little rock and grabs the shiner!

This eel is BEAUTIFUL!!

Anyways, the store is called Reef Plus and only sells saltwater fish (this makes me think they have to know what they are talking about)

Is a White Ribbon Eel really workable in a 29 Gallon Tank?

Does anyone have any experience with these creatures?!?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

(I posted a picture of my tank in case needed)
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Old 09-15-2011, 01:49 AM   #2
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Could it work, maybe, would I put it in your tank the way it looks in the picture, no because it will probably eat your fish. I personally wouldn't do it, but I don't have experience with ribbon eels, only snowflake eels.
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Old 09-15-2011, 02:54 AM   #3
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I think ribbons are much less hardy than the more common eels. I had a snowflake in a 20 for about a year it was only about 1’ 6” though. I would say your tank is to small if you plan on keeping it there.
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Old 09-15-2011, 05:24 AM   #4
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I think ribbons are much less hardy than the more common eels. I had a snowflake in a 20 for about a year it was only about 1’ 6” though. I would say your tank is to small if you plan on keeping it there.
I agree i have seen many experienced hobbyists fail at keeping these eels especially the blue ribbon eel, so make sure you do some research especially on the feeding, but a for the tank size i think you will be fine.
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Old 09-15-2011, 05:28 AM   #5
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They like very particular water conditions. You have to get it just right for them or else they will not last very long at all
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Old 09-15-2011, 10:52 AM   #6
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I agree i have seen many experienced hobbyists fail at keeping these eels especially the blue ribbon eel, so make sure you do some research especially on the feeding, but a for the tank size i think you will be fine.
Awesome! From the research I have done it seems like the Blue Ribon eel is much less hardy then the White Ribbon Eel. Mainly due to feeding problems. Most of them are caught wild and never fully adjust to being captive...They basically don't eat and die... It is supposed to be a good sign if it will eat frozen food!
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Old 09-15-2011, 10:55 AM   #7
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I think ribbons are much less hardy than the more common eels. I had a snowflake in a 20 for about a year it was only about 1’ 6” though. I would say your tank is to small if you plan on keeping it there.
I'd love to get an eel! You had a snowflake eel in a 20 gallon tank for a eyar? Can they survive in a 29 gallon for longer? I don't want to get an eel if it won't be happy! I will obviously wait if it shouldn't be done...

My current livestock includes: Clown, Purple Dottyback, Midas Blenny, and a Brown Serpent Sea Star
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Old 09-15-2011, 06:36 PM   #8
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it was a 20 gallon long so it had a better footprint than a 20 tall. I had it in a tank with 2 damsels, the damsels held there own against it. They are awesome i could feed it feeder fish out of my fingers lol. That said, I wouldn’t try it when they get bigger. I have a friend that was bit by a large chainlink while we were snorkeling... not good. I would say you would be ok with a small one for a while. People freak out on tank sizes for them. They basically sit under a rock until they smell food. The most important thing I think is keeping up on water changes. They are very messy eaters and even messier poopers. It will look like mouse poop all over the bottom of your tank if you feed to much, thus a bigger tank is much easier to maintain.
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