Best way to catch fish

Brieninsac

Member
Due to an outbreak of Ich I need to remove all my fish and move them to hospital tanks for treatment. I'm really struggling to catch these little boogers.

My two Clowns and Pajama Cardinal were easy to catch. The rest dart around the tank or into the rock work.

I've watched a couple of YouTube videos with some different techniques, but nothing is really working for me. One suggested leaving the net in the tank for a few hours so the fish got used to it. That didn't seem to help.

Then there are those who use fish traps. I already have one setup and will try to place some food in it after work and see if I can lure some in that way. Other then that I'm at a loss. I really don't want to have to start breaking down rock to get these guys out.

Some basic questions are...

Should I try and catch them after feeding or withhold feeding?

Should the lights be turned down?

Would morning when they first get up be better then mid day or in the evening after the lights go out, although then they'll be harder to see?

Please share your trick!
 

ali1

New member
Catch them 3am in the morning. Theyre all sleeping and it takes them a few minutes to wake up. Its how I caught my tangs. Dont even bother turning on the lights, use your phone to guide you
 

Brieninsac

Member
I made a little progress tonight. I caught 4 Chromis and a Carpenter's Wrasse with my Reef Gently Acclimate box setup as a trap. I put some brine and mysis inside and waited for them to swim in. Figures the dim witted Chromis were the next easiest to catch. Will try for more tomorrow morning.
 

xanthurum

New member
I've used chicken wire with great success. Use it to section off the tank until you can get them in a corner where they are easy to catch. Even small fish are scared to get near it even though they can swim thru it.
 

kmbyrnes

New member
For the "uncatchable" fish, try a tiny baited, barbless, ice fishing lure.

I hated to do it, but this was my last resort after fish traps failed.
I didn't have the storage to drain my tank at the time.
It took all of 5 minutes to catch my way too smart Clarkii and and move him to an new tank with a nice anemone. Didn't phase him for one minute.

I later used the high and dry method for a $5 damsel.
My beautiful $30 male Lyretail Anthias decided to hide in the rocks and tore his scales to bits flopping around. He died from his injuries.
I'd stick with fishing, even if it doesn't 'feel' right.
My .02
 

scooter31707

New member
IME, using a 2 liter soda bottle, cutting it in half, inserting the top into the bottom. Put some food in. Might have to wait a couple of days, if you have that long. Another option is to drain the tank, making sure there is enough water in there where they can barely swim.
 

M.R Cowfish

New member
best and only way , tear down entire tank , remove fish , re-scape entire tank , do water change and enjoy new tank ! At least that's the only method that works for me
 

ThRoewer

New member
Trap, net or barbless hook. What works best depends on the fish.

Trap should always be your first choice and hook the last resort.

A net works well with smaller fish that are hard to get in traps. Key is to coerce them out and distract them long enough to catch them. Slow movements are more effective than trying to be fast.

BTW, sometimes a mirror is better to get a fish into a trap than food.
 

foxngn

New member
I wanna catch 3 orange line chromis which is abt 2inches big out of my 2ft cube.
First time was a success where i use a glass+cover the exit with transparent bag. But the bag was not setup properly & they got out.. Now they wouldn't go near that thing anymore.

I wonder if this time i change to use those 2L water bottle, will they be smart enough to know?

I thought of catching them after light out, but they seems able to detect what's going on.
 

Brieninsac

Member
Trap, net or barbless hook. What works best depends on the fish.

Trap should always be your first choice and hook the last resort.

A net works well with smaller fish that are hard to get in traps. Key is to coerce them out and distract them long enough to catch them. Slow movements are more effective than trying to be fast.

BTW, sometimes a mirror is better to get a fish into a trap than food.

I'm still holding out hope I can catch the rest with the fish trap. If I can't and have to fish for them what sort of bait would you recommend? I know the frozen shrimp I have would just dissolve and not stay on the hook.
 

Joshua I.

New member
Ok I could not get my fish out either but I found a way to get them out I used a conch shell but any object with holes works simply put it in the tank wait a few days the fish will see it as a hiding place when there near it put the net in to scare them in then cover the hole or holes with your hands and lift the object out with the fish. Best part is fish sometimes won't go into fish traps but almost always go into natural hiding places.
 

DasCamel

New member
I spent a week trying to catch the last fish. Royal Gramma. Little bugger avoided traps like a boss.

Even worse, couldn't bait and hook him out. Had to drain...
 

foxngn

New member
ok, i caught 2 of my chromis using the bottle trap. After that i setup another trap using glass & wrapper, I guess the last chromis learn that it is a trap & it doesn't went it.
 
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