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Old 12-18-2005, 03:29 PM   #1
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Are butterflyfish hard to keep?

I was thinking of a longness butterflyfish for my 50ga. Are they hard to keep? Are they relatively hardy? Are they partly reef safe? What about them makes them not reef-safe? Thanks for any help
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Old 12-19-2005, 05:14 AM   #2
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I've always had trouble with them. Some others havent. They are quite risky as they may pick at sessile inverts and corals.

Ive tried longnose and copperband, both got ich.

Brenden and Lando have had luck with copperbands but are suggested for much larger systems
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Old 12-19-2005, 09:25 AM   #3
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I think a 50g is to small for any butterflyfish. The longnose can be hard to feed due to it's long snout so when considering one, be sure to watch it eat at the lfs before buying. Also, it will consume any duster worms you have. I had one and it lived for about six months. It died of unknown causes.
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Old 12-19-2005, 12:39 PM   #4
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Oh, so is the Longnose a bad idea?
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Old 12-19-2005, 04:06 PM   #5
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Not necessarily a bad choice, as long as you are buying a good fish. My issue would be tank size really. I'm sure it's done but having kept the fish and knowing the size they get, 50g just isn't large enough in my opinion.
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Old 12-19-2005, 04:39 PM   #6
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I see. Longnose's get that big? Are they hard to feed? if I got one, it wouldnt be for awhile and I would get it off of liveaquaria or saltwaterfish.com.
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Old 12-19-2005, 04:59 PM   #7
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They get around 9 inches so about the size of a yellow tang, or a bit bigger. They are easier to feed than the coral banded but with the long sharp mouth, gotta feed appropriately sized items. And they are carnivores and use that long nose to pick at crustations and worms in the live rock. So a quality angelfish/butterfly fish diet would work. Mine ate chopped up mysid without to much fuss. It would also try the flake but didn't have a taste for it and would spit it back out. An occassional live black worm would no doubt be appreciated as well.
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Old 12-19-2005, 05:55 PM   #8
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So the Longnose is a better choice than the Copperband? The Copperband is smaller also.
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Old 12-19-2005, 05:57 PM   #9
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Copperbanded are notoriously hard to feed. Some people get lucky like the two members we have but alot of times the cb butterfly won't take prepared foods and will perish once it consumes all it's natural food from your system. Another fish I wouldn't purchase without actually seeing it eat.
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Old 12-19-2005, 08:04 PM   #10
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Ok, I guess the Longnose is the better choice. Thanks!
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Old 12-19-2005, 10:41 PM   #11
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IF you go with the longnose just make sure you are feeding food that is small enough for it to eat. Also, don't forget the supplements.
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Old 12-22-2005, 02:06 PM   #12
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i had a copperband in my 55gal for about 6 months. he did awesome i made sure he was a smaller one so he did fine. he ate all my little aptasia problem i had then moved on to mysid and brine shrimp without any problems. as he continued to nip at the rocks. but an unfortunate powerhead problem lead to him passing away but i never had any problems. and i only had 5 more gal than you. but from what they are saying guess it is luck of the draw. good luck.
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