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Tuduku

Where did I go wrong?

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So this post seriously pains me to type. I was hoping to be putting up my first tank thread this weekend. Instead it has now gone south. I have been working with a very tight budget on this project due to some very pricey, and very unplanned, medical bills. So basic background info: tank is 4.5 months old. I have been following common guides on how to start a reef, and up till 48 hours ago, everything was going well. All water parameters were ok this weekend and this morning. temp 77 ph7.9 - 8 no2 1-5

 

After looking at my few soft corals, shrimps and cuc for months. Last Tuesday I picked up my first fish for my tank. 2 tank raised oc clowns. They looked fine and healthy, just not hungry. Which I tried a few different pellets/flakes + frozen foods. They did eat a little, but not like how I was expecting. Yesterday (Tuesday) I got home from work to find one was completely missing. I did a small water change and the other clown looked fine. Then this morning, he was slow and breathing hard, I had to go to work and just hoped for the best. Nope, pile of cuc in the corner could only mean one thing. :(

 

Whats weird is everything else seems to be doing just fine. In fact my (1) mushroom is larger than I've ever seen it. GSP is fine, inverts are molting almost daily (some getting rather big now). If anyone has some ideas or could help me figure out what went wrong I would be very appreciative.

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Clowns can actually be hard to get started eating. How much did you feed that wasn't eaten? If you over fed you might have had an amonnia spike.

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Very small amounts, tried different times of day each day. IE: morning, next day at night, then next day in afternoon...

 

The 20 hermits +2 shrimps easily ate all the excess. And no ammonia showed on my tests.

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Don't get too down on yourself sometimes fish just die for no reason . Could have been sick before you got them . If everything checked out with your water id just go get a couple more and try again .

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The clowns were new in the LFS, so I was hoping that *it wasn't me*. Its still hard to not be down on myself. I really don't want to be "that guy" who just murders his little pets with an "time to buy more" attitude.

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try a damsel or 2 to start there are a few that are very nice colors way cheaper and more forgiving till you get the hang of it. did you QT your fish? how did you aclimate them?. I know everyone loves nemo but get a little practice 1ST on something more forgiving.. also ask the LFS to feed them to make sure they are eating prior to purchseing them, also ask the what they are being fead. some fish are just picky eaters.. also try to get captive bred they tend to be more forgiving and easer for people new/ newer to the hobbie to keep.

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First what size tank are you running? And what did you test for?

 

Oc clowns are a good first choice (clowns are basically damsels). One thing I always try to do is pick a fish that has been at the LFS a few days. They can be very stressed by being shipped from lord knows where to the LFS. They are then aclimated, you buy them that day and then they are aclimated again. It is a lot to go through for the poor little things. My guess would be it was the stress that did them in :( If something went too wrong with the water quality I would expect the shrimp to die before the clowns.

 

+1 with the good job getting captive breed. They do tend to be hardier.

 

I'm sorry that your fist fish purchase ended this way but don't give up. Its disheartening but its all a learning experince. Make sure your water is still good and when you are ready try again.

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try a damsel or 2 to start there are a few that are very nice colors way cheaper and more forgiving till you get the hang of it. did you QT your fish? how did you aclimate them?. I know everyone loves nemo but get a little practice 1ST on something more forgiving.. also ask the LFS to feed them to make sure they are eating prior to purchseing them' date=' also ask the what they are being fead. some fish are just picky eaters.. also try to get captive bred they tend to be more forgiving and easer for people new/ newer to the hobbie to keep.[/quote']

 

DON'T get a damsel. You will regret it later. They are the meanest fish.

 

That being said, clowns are in the same family as damsels, they are just more cute. They can still turn into fish with monster attitudes. If they don't have enough space, then they will terrorize other fish.

 

Some corals can get big and happy when there is ammonia, nitrite or nitrate in the tank. It feeds the algae that grow in the tissue. The same levels are toxic to other things.

 

Read this article: http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2004-01/eb/index.php

Scroll down until you see MYTH 15: it will help you with what your next steps should be. I would say keep adding coral to get to the point where you want your tank to be. Then add a fish or two. Then you are done. Let the tank bloom and thrive.

 

dsoz

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Very small amounts, tried different times of day each day. IE: morning, next day at night, then next day in afternoon...

 

The 20 hermits +2 shrimps easily ate all the excess. And no ammonia showed on my tests.

 

Sounds like it may just be the fish; sadly some fish just won't make it. :( You may want to have your water tested with a refractometer, I know I killed my first saltwater fish because my hydrometer was faulty. :(

 

On a side note IME clowns dont pair well when they are the same size; it is better IMO to get one and then when she grows larger you can get her a boyfriend.

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Id get another too, the clown ive had is a lover have had him since he was a tiny juvi and hes finally startong to get big and become a girl cause i got him another little juvi to be his bf. That being said the little one whos still pretty small is a dick bites at me in the tank. They are some hardy fish though, you probably just got an unlucky purchase, ive been there so many times.

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I have a refractometer and water is tested almost daily at 35ppt.

 

It's a 30g.

 

WOW you are on top of things. Sounds like a spot of bad luck, keep up the good work and I'm sure you will have a thriving reef before you know it. :)

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Thank you all for the replies. It does help to know that it might just be an unlucky purchase. The clowns were probably just under an inch, so quite young. And in hind sight, must have had one hell of a day going from breeder to lfs to my tank. I will follow your guy's advice to acquire some more starter corals, will take awhile though. (any ideas on what and where?) Maybe in a few months, I'll try a fish again. Damsel or Nemo or other, idk yet.

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Sounds like the fish were sick before you put them in. Make sure to drip acclimate all new fish to help them adjust to your tank. NEVER buy fish from a LFS tank that they have just received that day. Always give it a day or two. If you see a fish at your LFS that you just gotta have, put a deposit down on it and a good LFS will hold it for you. I always make it a point to see a fish eat at the LFS before I buy it. Ask them to feed it, they most likely will. Don't give up hope, it sounds like you are very meticulous and caring, so you will have success!!!

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Hey man sorry to hear about ur lose I just got over an ich breakout lost my chevron tang, blue hippo, and my kole tang so I did pretty good but it hurts I know brother but if it was me I would get a couple green chromis there like 5 bucks a piece and extremely hardy just a thought man keep your head up and stay with it cause in the end it is worth it

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+1 love my chromie nice fish get a few and you have a school 3, small school equals one clown in price give or take a couple bucks

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I have a strawberry psuedocromis you can have .. He is mean though . I have him with two elderly clowns . Again he is pretty aggressive so idk just a thought u can google him pretty fish . I was going to take him in for a trade but too lazy . Let me know if you want some zoas or something also I can throw some stuff your way .

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I have a strawberry psuedocromis you can have .. He is mean though . I have him with two elderly clowns . Again he is pretty aggressive so idk just a thought u can google him pretty fish . I was going to take him in for a trade but too lazy . Let me know if you want some zoas or something also I can throw some stuff your way .

 

Yeah Jeff you are the most generous guy with LS I know.

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I just know how much I enjoy my tanks and this hobby in general it has truely saved my life . If I have a little extra and somebody needs it they can gladly have it .. I have almost gave up plenty of times but somebody always helps me and gets me back up and running enjoying the tanks . .

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Wow, thank you Jeff. And thank you to anyone else that helps me keep this experiance moving forward. I promise to pay it forward x2 someday to struggling newbies.

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I agree, more than likely your fish had a disease if they perished that quickly. maybe velvet. i would let the tank run fishless for a month and try again with a pair that eat in the LFS and have been in for a 4-5+ days. probably won't be the last fish that dies. good luck

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Only real odd thing I noticed about them happened the night before they started going south. One started to rub its self against things. Like get close to a rock, hover then spasm and quickly dart against the rock. Happened a dozen times over an hour+. I assumed it was more play or something like that.

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