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Old 06-04-2015, 05:19 PM   #1
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Looking for bold fish

Hello, I just signed up for these forums.

Before I go into my question, I'll give you a bit of background info about my tank/experience. I started a 180 gallon FOWLR (6 footer) about a year and a half ago. My gear is quite old but it was free because my dad got out of the hobby and I got his hand me downs. I did buy a few extra powerheads to increase the water flow/aeration. I know my setup is not optimal and it's pretty old school, but I don't want to throw a ton of money into the hobby at the moment. So here's what I have:

-2 Fluval FX5 filters - I fill these with filter floss (changed weekly), activated charcoal (changed monthly), and bioballs (cleaned bimonthy). While not ideal, I feel like these provide good water flow and a chance to remove some proteins and nitrates via the filter floss. A protein skimmer is not feasible at the moment, and I don't want to waste money on a cheap one.

-Three Hydor Koralia circulation and wave pumps of varying GPH: 1500 and 850x2.

-5 inch DSB

-200 lbs live rock

- 2 Amphiprion ocellaris (Ocellaris Clownfish) approx 2 inches

- 1 Halichoeres chrysus (Yellow Wrasse) approx 2 inches

- 1 Siganus uspi (Bicolor Foxface) approx 6 inches

- 1 Siganus corallinus (Blue Spotted Rabbitfish) approx 4 inches

- 1 Zebrasoma flavescens (Yellow Tang) approx 5 inches

- 2 Pholidichthys leucotaenia (Engineer Gobies) approx 2 inches

- 1 Ophiocoma sp. (Brittle Sea Star)

- 10 Nassarius distortus (Nassarius snails)

- 1 Pseudoboletia sp. (Purple Short Spine Pincushion Urchin)

- 10 red leg hermit crabs

I do 25% water changes every 2-3 weeks and top up with RO water every day or so. The temperature is kept pretty stable at 26 degrees. pH is steady at 8.4. No detectable ammonia or nitrites. Nitrate is approximately 5-10 ppm before water changes.

I also have a three foot long 40 gallon QT tank with a 4 inch DSB, overhang filter with filter floss, and a Hydor Koralia circulation and wave pump (1500 GPH). Currently the tank has a Paracanthurus hepatus (Hippo Tang) that is approximately 6 inches. All new fish are kept in this tank for a minimum of 6 weeks at 1.011 gravity (measured with a high quality refractometer) before going into the display tank.

I have another 20 gallon QT tank with 4 inch DSB that I use to quarantine inverts. All new arrivals stay in here for a minimum of 8 weeks at 1.025 gravity before going into the display tank.

I have found the QT process to be extremely helpful so far. Most of the fish initially had one encounter with ich and then spots never showed up afterwards. I have had zero evidence disease in my display tank.

All the fish in the display tank have terrific color and they have nice full bodies with no spots or ragged fins etc. HOWEVER, the yellow tang and both rabbitfish are extremely timid. They immediately go into hiding as soon as they see me. If I am in the room, they will only come out to feed. Even while feeding, they are extremely jumpy and will retreat at the first sign of trouble (i.e. I move my body in any way at all). However, the clownfish and wrasse will eat out of my hand. They recognize me and will immediately come up to the glass to see me. So what's wrong here? Is there anything I can do to make the shy fish more bold? The hippo tang is also very shy.

Additionally, could anyone suggest some fish that are typically more bold? I have heard the Koran and Emperor Angels are good but I wanted to wait to add one of those as it should be the last one added to the tank. I have also heard Naso tangs are quite bold. I am assuming Triggers and Puffers are out since they would eat my inverts? I also want to get some Blood Red Fire Shrimp eventually. How about the reef safe Wrasses, would any of those be worthwhile?

Thanks in advance and I appreciate any constructive criticism.

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Old 06-06-2015, 08:41 PM   #2
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If you want inverts, triggers and puffers are 100% out of the question. Some people claim their's are peaceful, but it is extremely rare. My huma huma trigger annihilated about 15 snails I put in the tank within 5 minutes (the snails were stuck to the rocks and he ripped them off). Naso tangs will generally get a little big for a 180 in my opinion... In general each fish is different. Some are super shy and some aren't. Most fish that are very peaceful won't be super "outgoing," and since you're going for a more peaceful FOWLR, getting a super bold fish may be a little tricky. Ill try to think of a few, but in the meantime, if you have any ideas or other questions, feel free to ask!

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Old 06-07-2015, 09:46 AM   #3
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I think you are maxed out on fish. There's nothing you can do to make fish more trusting except for continuing what you are doing. Some day they may catch on and come out more often, but the odds are that if they haven't yet, they probably never will.
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Old 06-07-2015, 11:54 AM   #4
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I also personally think you are at your limit as far as fish. I also agree that triggers or puffers will decimate your clean up crew. Sounds like a nice tank.
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Old 06-07-2015, 10:48 PM   #5
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First off, I agree you are maxed out, maybe even a little overstocked. I have a 150 gallon with a porcupine puffer, harlequin tusk, mombasa lion, wartskin angler, and dwarf eel. My tusk hides when I first walk in, but the puffer and lion are very personable. The angler is as well, but he just waves his lure at me. The puffer follows me around the tank and actually let's me pet him because he knows food is coming. That being said, your tank isn't equipped for these fish. The lion and angler would eat the clowns and wrasse. The puffer and tusk would eat the snails the first night. Sometimes I get a order from reef cleaners, because they do need to wear down their teeth, but I don't expect it to last more than a week. The only invert they don't eat is bumble bee snails. I don't know why. They just don't.

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Old 06-08-2015, 06:51 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Jasonrusso View Post
The only invert they don't eat is bumble bee snails. I don't know why. They just don't.
They are predators anyway. Carnivores.

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