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Old 03-28-2006, 01:26 PM   #1
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Purple pseudochromis vs shrimp problem

I added two cleaner shrimp two days ago and found what was left of one being picked at by my other inhabitants this morning. I knew that the two purple pseudochromis were aggressive towards smaller shrimp, but as the two I added were of a larger size I really didn't think much of it. The second I added them to the tank, however, they were being picked at. After what I thought was initial curiousity they seemed to be fine, so I just let them be. One of the cleaner shrimp was carrying eggs, which is what led me to believe triggered the problem to begin with.

Is it safe to try and add cleaner shrimp to the tank again? I have two peppermint shrimp in there which are smaller than the two cleaners, yet they've never had a proble with the pseudochromis. I know that it could be a number of factors as to why it died but the fact that only one of the fish was attacking BOTH shrimp made me scratch my head. Anyone able to help me out with some pointers?

Tank condions are good, although I don't know my calcim/iodine levels, and the shrimp were acclimatized properly. The one that died had molted the night before.
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Old 03-28-2006, 03:24 PM   #2
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Pseudochromis are known to be very aggressive to and kill shrimp. I know bicolors go after them and eat them. I am not positive on the purple ones. You may have to choose one or the other...maybe someone else has experience putting the 2 together...

Paul
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Old 03-28-2006, 05:03 PM   #3
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My Fridmani Pseudochromis did my 1" cleaner in. Hasn't messed with the peppermints at all and I’ve since replaced my small cleaner with the largest cleaner I could find (about 3”) and so far it’s been ok even after molting three times. I also have a 3” banded coral shrimp and he is by far my favorite of the 3 with tons of personality and always in full view.

It’s pretty much a gamble when it comes to just about any Pseudochromis and you can either do one or the other or let nature take its course.

IME the larger the shrimp the greater the chances of them being able to play nice. Also having enough lr for the shrimp to hide out for a week after molting will greatly increase your success.
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Old 03-28-2006, 05:27 PM   #4
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Well just to add my two cents, and experience with the purple psuedochromis and my coral banded shrimp; it didn't really work out. LOL

They psuedochromis only stayed in our tank one day...he would not leave my coral banded alone, not since the second i put him in. I thought they would just work out their differences because my coral banded is pretty large, and rules the roost, but no. The psuedochromis was just tooo mean and wouldn't back off, I 've never seen anything like it. It was a showdown.

So, in my experience psuedochromis and shirmp (mine at least) don't mix. Good luck.
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Old 03-28-2006, 05:37 PM   #5
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I forgot about your purple shrimp eating crazy fish! I guess I've been more lucky but it is a Fridmani and not nearly aggressive as most psuedochromis IME. I assume you still have the CBS and got rid of that fish!
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Old 03-29-2006, 02:22 PM   #6
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Are the cleaner shrimp able to defend themselves at all? The other one in the tank has found some live rock to camp out in and hasn't moved out in the last four days. I have watched the tank a ton since putting him in and haven't noticed the psychochromis pestering him anymore, so I'm hoping that things will work out as I want to try another cleaner.
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Old 03-29-2006, 03:05 PM   #7
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The CBS at least have pinchers and will swing them wildly if a smaller fish messes with it but would still be vulnerable to a larger predator fish.

Cleaners, peppermints, & camel backs have no such ability to ward off advancing fish and only the larger ones have a fighting chance and depending on the fish that’s pestering it is still limited.

Also remember that they molt every couple of weeks when young and about once every other month when fully mature and are extremely vulnerable for around 5-8 days until their new shell hardens.
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Old 03-29-2006, 06:00 PM   #8
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I think that's what did the cleaner in - she was carrying eggs which made her a target and then had molted the same night she was first introduced in the tank. Rough luck, but hopefully it won't happen again. I have (well, had) plans to add two fire shrimp, but will try another cleaner first and see how that goes. I have three shrimp in the tank right now and everyone gets along fine, so maybe after a little time the pseudo will recognize the shrimp as tankmates and not as a meal. I noticed when I added hermit crabs that they seemed to instinctively approach the new item and see if it was edible.

Thank you all for your replies and your help.
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Old 03-29-2006, 06:01 PM   #9
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Yes, tecwzrd the psuedochromis went back the next day. He stayed only one night and the whole time I was so worried for my shrimp. LOL. I still have the shrimp, he's great...and now I just walk right passed the psuedochromis at the LFS thinking to myself "never again". Such a shame too, he added such great color to the tank...mean little guy though.

I have heard that the Fridmani are different, but I just dont even want to risk it. Plus my shrimp is one of the first things we got so he's quite established. I don't want to put him through that again...he was scared of all the fish after that. He's gotten better now.
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