Purple Dottyback (Satan with fins)

Dlrb360

New member
I have a purple Dotty back that has become a serious problem in a just a few short days. It has harassed my Clown fish and is now trying to destroy a Dwarf Angel. This little purple devil fish has no issue chasing my Cardinals that are over 3 times its size. I would like to get rid of this periwinkle problem as soon as possible but the net has proved a impossible way to catch the fish. Last night i attempted to move my live rock to catch it and the fish vaporized. No kidding vanished without a trace. looked in the rock while i had it in a bucket, searched in any obstacle left in the tank, even looked in the overflow. I assumed after 2 hours of hard searching she managed to escape into the plumbing somehow or jump out and i missed it. I put my tank back together and watched for several more hours. NO Dotty!!! At this point i was almost relieved thinking she was done for somewhere on the way to my sump. This morning I got up and swimming around my tank was the little purple devil. I am trying to catch the F*&$er but having no luck. Please give your best advise for catching this pest. I currently have a bottle trap set up but my puffer seems to be the only fish willing to swim in.
 

Fish Ed

New member
I KNOW HOW YOU FEEL! It's sheer anger and frustration. It's impossible to remove dottybacks!! I've had close success with using tiny fishing hooks.

They're the devil.
 

Dlrb360

New member
This all started because my wife had to have a purple fish.......NEVER let your wife pick tank mates.
 

TigeBell

New member
See if placing a mirror against the tank will cause the dotty to want to fight it's mirrored image. You might be able to swipe it up in a net while it is being distracted by the mirror. ;)
 

snorvich

Team RC member
Team RC
Sure fire is to lower the water (saving it in rubbermaid) then catching it is much easier. Night time works well for most fish too. Also, it helps to check out the behavior of a fish before buying it.
 

DieselJunkie

New member
Also, it helps to check out the behavior of a fish before buying it.

^ Almost all fish need a certain set of perimeters or have their down sides. Some of the most beautiful fish are the hardest to keep (leopard wrasee, blue spot, mandarins, etc) Some fish are easy to keep but are jerks and will need your entire tank to call home

Search for the coke bottle trap, maybe give that a whirl also.
 

AdamNC

New member
I KNOW HOW YOU FEEL! It's sheer anger and frustration. It's impossible to remove dottybacks!! I've had close success with using tiny fishing hooks.

They're the devil.

Actually it's extremely simple. Because of their inquisitive nature using a bottle trap caught my neon dotty back in less then 5 mins with a piece of krill in it. He was the devil that went back to the fish store. Terrorized/harassed 3 of my fish before I had a screen top and they jumped. They were fine until I got the dotty back. Sometimes you get lucky with them, sometimes you don't. I had one years ago that was a model citizen.
 

Outrigger Reef

New member
This all started because my wife had to have a purple fish.......NEVER let your wife pick tank mates.

Same thing happen to me. I went and got a fish trap from the LFS. Put in the tank for all the fish to get use to it and the next day when I got home the purple devil was in it. He was mad when the door slammed. :celeb1:
 

Swetpants

New member
If your wife wants purple, get an orchid dottyback (aka freidmani). I've had a few of them over the years. They have always been model citizens.
 

Dlrb360

New member
Well after 13-14 hours of trying to catch this little monster with a bottle trap I almost gave up. I turned out the lights and waited to see if Satan might take a nap. Sure enough as soon as she felt like she wasn't being watched she slipped under one rock stacked on another and went to bed. I finally resorted to slipping a gallon zip lock over these two rocks and even though she woke up this caused her to keep hiding. I was able to lift rocks, demon dottyback, and bag as a whole. Now that my tank has been exorcised of this evil i have to find a way to store it unil my LFS opens at 10am.
 

ThRoewer

New member
I can confirm that P. fridmani is probably the "least" aggressive of the dottybacks. But that doesn't mean they don't try at times to pick a fight.
The fridmani is also one of the few reef fishes where it is relatively easy to tell male and female. And if you keep them as pair they are way too busy with each other to bother other fish much.
 

fearyaks

New member
Glad you caught the bugger. A nice peaceful alternate fish (Don't know about the Orchids that people are recommending) would be a Purple Firefish. They're great!
 

cody6766

Super Best Friends!
Premium Member
Purple stripe dottybacks can be decent if you really like the fish's body shape. I've had two, in separate tanks, and one is not a problem in my 120. He was in a 34g and was also no more aggressive than my clowns.

The other was in a 14g BioCube with a shrimp and goby pair. I tried to add a yellow tailed damsel and the dottyback wouldn't accept him. At that point, the whole tank was his and he fought for it. I think he tried to eat the pistol, because I found him with a large bruise on his side, dead, not too long ago.

So, dottybacks are a gamble that I wouldn't make again, despite having a great looking, well behaved example in my tank.
 

Dlrb360

New member
I think my wife has gotten over the obsession with having the perfect purple fish. This Dottyback really scared her off from it. Now she is obsessing over a Midas Blenny. I think that will be a better choice over all for our tank.
 

Crumpy

New member
Guys I've found this method to be quite effective , I know it's an old post but I thought I would share. So at night after the lights go out make the room completely dark. use a mag light or any led light ( phone light works) to " blind" the fish. They will look at the light and while they are preoccupied scoup them up !
 

MortalWombatX

New member
I've learned very early in the game to NEVER EVER add a dottyback to a reef aquarium. Learned the hard way too. RIP possum wrasse, six-line wrasse, and many chromis'.

I really really liked my possum wrasse:sad1:
 

ThRoewer

New member
I have a pair of Neon dottybacks in my 42 CADlight and they behave very well - if not they get a beating from the juvenile Regal Angel there...
... well they get it anyway just for good measure and because he is a little punk.
 
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