Tips to get New Clown to Eat...

raoul

New member
It looks like we're having terrible luck with clowns recently.
About six or seven weeks ago we were able to get some b&w occel. from the lfs. About 2 weeks ago we lost one. It quit eating and I don't know why. The other one is fine, nice and healthy looking.

Saturday another LFS (both stores we trust very much) had a couple b&w occels come in in their ORA shipment and he saved one for us.

This guy ate for us on Saturday, but I haven't seen him eat much since, and I'm getting worried we're going to have a repeat.

Any ideas on why it wouldn't eat, and how to try to get it eating?

A little back ground: They're in a 75 gal tank that's been set up for over two years. The other fish in the tank are peaceful and haven't been harrassing this guy. The other clown is still doing fine. All fish are doing really well. This is our second reef tank, the first one is still up and running next to this one. We've been around for a little while, but this is the first time I've run into this problem.

I've tried multiple feedings of Prime Reef flakes, Formula Two Flakes, mysis shrimp, a krill-squid-mysis-cyclopeeze-garlic - vitamin mixture that I made up, and even (I hate to say it) brine shrimp. All in an effort to try to get this thing eating.

I've fed at different times of the day, different sizes of morsels, etc...

This guy has been in different parts of the tank, not just hanging out in one section. It does hold its fins close to it's body though, as if it doesn't feel 100%, but looking at it, I can't "see" anything visably wrong with it.

Occassionally it comes out to see me. When there's food in the water there's some excitement but no eating.

I'm not sure what else to try, any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
 

7808

New member
mine is new and only seems to eat with the lights off, ambient light only, marine flakes
 

Eldouble

In Memoriam
I got 5 ora stock b&w and no real issues. They didn't eat for a day or so, but they'll eat just about anything I feed them now. Be sure the food is small enough to fit in their mouths. All my juvenile clowns love betta food, which is really really small pellets. Just keep trying things. Even most picky fish will eat something before they starve. I had a show size blonde naso not eat for 2 weeks after he arrived. Once he found a food he liked, he started eating most everything except shimp.
 

raoul

New member
Thanks for the ideas. I haven't tried live yet, although that's on my list of things to do.

I've added food at different times of the day as well, and still not getting a good response - although all the other fish are lovin' life!

I didn't expect a feeding issue with a captive bred fish, after all, this shouldn't be at all foreign to them.

I'm worried about the whole starve to death thing because that seems to be what happened to the other clown juvi that this one's replacing. Luckily we still have one juvi that's a little piggy, so I'm not worried about this one, but this little guy has got me worried.

It looks like it's relaxed a bit though, which gets my hopes up. It's still holding some of its fins close to it's body, but others not as much. He did have to go in with two bigger fish and I'm wondering if this is throwing him off a bit. They're not harrassing him that I've seen, but still are intimidating when there's food in the water.
 

Eldouble

In Memoriam
Got to remember... ORA and other big producers feed their fish a pretty steady diet of one specific food only with no variations. And I'm pretty sure its different then what you have. He doesnt know any thing else is food yet. He'll eat. You could try live, but he hasnt seen that since he was 3 weeks old either. But it could trigger a feeding reponse.
 

Eldouble

In Memoriam
I should have said... mine didnt take to ORAGlow either. The package I got, the crumbles were of a large size. Too big for their mouths.
 

theclearblue

New member
Hmm... ORA specifically advertises ORAGlow as being the food that they use.

Might it be worthwhile sending an email to ORA asking about this?
 

raoul

New member
Thanks for the suggestions. He ate the first day, so we were encouraged, but after that nothing.

I found him dead on the sand this morning.

It's so frustrating. Both clowns we've lost were captive bred. They're touted as being hardier and better suited to tank life. Now, 2 out of 3 are dead.

In thinking back, the last one we got was in a tank with wild caught fish and I wonder if it picked something up. It would seem that would cancel out some of the advantages of purchasing a captive bred fish if you expose it to wild caughts.

My husband is very eager to find another replacement for this one. We really wanted a pair of clowns and now we're back to a single one. The remaining one seemed very happy to see another clown, we saw more of that one when we added the last clown than we had in a while. I just don't want to flush another $40 down the drain. I want to hold off a bit, I hate feeling like Darla the fish killer...

This is so frustrating. But the info on the food is helpful in case we go through ORA again. We're also going to get live food going - something we wanted to do anyway, but maybe that will be helpful in the future. We've got a mandarin that will like it regardless :)

Thanks again
 

hunkafish

New member
I lost both my tank raised Australian Blk/org/whit clowns same as your describing. They were a mated pair very young healthy when I brought them home. small guy didn't eat for two days then started eating spectra A+ small pellets. he was stressed out from all the rock and corals and stayed at the top corner of the tank died after 9 days 2nd lasted 4 days after that. My conclusion after losing both clowns. Tank raised fish are wimps mentally/physically compared to a wild reef fish, just my opinion but I am noticing a trend from threads like yours an others. I hate losing fish I take it personally as I didn't do my job preparing a proper environment for them. All my other fish doing fine
 

raoul

New member
Wow, just got off the phone with my hubby. The lfs that we got the last fish from is replacing it for us. I was not expecting that. He should have some in next week.
We're going to get some of the ORA food in the mean time, see if we have better luck with this one - here's hoping!
 

raoul

New member
All my other fish are doing fine too, including the one clown that was in the first addition. Fat, healthy, happy looking fish. Fins are erect and not held close to the body. This poor guys fins were usually held close which is usually a sign they aren't feeling well. This one though, explored the tank. It would react when there was food in the water, just wouldn't eat.
 

km133688

New member
get those little glass shrimp from the LFS. There is no fish I have ever seen that won't go after them as long as they are small enough. it will trigger the response to feed.

The other thing I believe is that animals do learn from example, so if there is other stuff in the tank eating the mysis shrimp, then keep feeding it. he will see his buddies chowing down and sooner or later figure it out.

Good luck. Kevin
 

theclearblue

New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=11630039#post11630039 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by hunkafish
My conclusion after losing both clowns. Tank raised fish are wimps mentally/physically compared to a wild reef fish, just my opinion but I am noticing a trend from threads like yours an others.

(IMO) The last thing we need to be doing in this hobby is making anecdotal assertions that encourage the purchase of wild caught fish when we have such a great selection of tank bred specimens available.

I encourage you to start a discussion on this topic to see if anyone has experiences like yours.
 

theclearblue

New member
Just for clarification - I'm not trying to pick a fight, but I thought it was worth providing a counter-point.

Good luck with the replacement fish raoul - keep us updated.
 

rlf_racing

New member
Raoul I feel your pain. I had two black sebea clowns from a trusting fs along with two blue green chromis. I lost one chromis to an infection of some kind on its scales as far as i know. It was eating great one day and gone the next. As for the sebeas both were doing great for a week eating, swimming the whole tank. Heck they got my two percs to swim the whole tank. Then I lost one to a very large strawberry hermit crab which was very surprising. then all of a sudden the other got sick and stop eating all at once. I am assuming it got sick even though it showed no signs of sickness. Then a few days later it was gone also. thinking it was my water I did a water change and checked my parameters and all checked out okay. I today bought two large clowns. One nemo and a brown saddle clown. I already have two percs, neon goby blue tang and one blue green chromis. All ate and doing fine. I have to agree with theclearblue to buy anything that is captive bred and leave our oceans alone. And also any and all survival skills genitcally imprinted in them along with aggression. My 2cents
 

raoul

New member
Thanks for the well wishes guys, hopefully the next one will be the last one.

I'm torn between asking my fish guy to leave it in the bag for me (so it doesn't get thrown in with wild caught fish) or letting him hold onto it for a couple days so I can see it swimming and see if it is eating before I take it home. I don't know which way I would be better off.
 
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