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FAQs about Anglerfish, Frogfish Stocking/Selection

Related Articles: Anglerfishes

Related FAQs:  Anglers 1, Anglers 2, Angler ID, Angler Behavior, Angler Compatibility, Angler Systems, Angler Feeding, Angler Disease, Angler Reproduction,

Some Anglers species get quite large... Antennarius commerson pair pic in N. Sulawesi by DianaF.

Angler Fish; stkg., sm. sys. period       12/16/14
I'm rethinking my refugium/seahorse idea. My thoughts are now to either put a few mangroves
<See WWM re... most get too large, are not easily kept>
in with some xenia or possibly a sole angler fish
<? Will inhale seahorses>
possibly a small A. Maculatus.
<Oh, this one stays small>
The HOB is only 4 gallons with the dimension being 19" x 4" x 12"h and is plumbed into a sump on my 155 gallon tank. Will this work or is it too small. Let me know your thoughts..thx Chris
<Might. Bob Fenner>
Re: Angler Fish
The Angler would be all by himself. I can't think of a more unique fish that could live in such a small environment. Thanks for the feedback..cheers Chris
Chris Bourgeois
Lynden Canada Co
<Ahh, see the coverage of stocking small systems on WWM; or my eBook on Amazon re, or the collection/series of articles on TFH and Ultramarine re. Bob Fenner>

Biocube 29. Seahorses or Angler? Sel./stkg.    5/18/11
Hello crew,
After much debate on whether to sell my 29G Biocube and "invest" the $$$ back into my 75G reef or to keep the 29 and set it back up, it appears setting it back up is the conclusion!
Since I already have a 75G mixed reef, I would like to do something "different" with this tank.
Obviously being only 29G, I realize my options are very limited. After hours of research when I should have been working, I believe I have decided to either set it up as a seahorse tank, or as an angler tank.
<Mmm, either group... just small/er species>
I will be setting this tank up essentially from the ground up, so I want to ensure I do this as safe and "risk free" as you can in the marine world. I plan to purchase all new live sand and ~30lbs of live rock and seed it with some rubble and sand in addition from my reef tank, and of course cycle it completely. So given the two choices, here are some questions that I have.
1. Given the choice between a seahorse tank with two Firefish, a clown goby, and a few corals....xenia, Zoas, maybe Shrooms...vs. the angler as a FOWLR or few soft corals, which do you consider the "easier"?
<Mmm, the Angler... though not nearly as exciting as the former...!>
2. Would a pair of H. erectus seahorses be the best/hardiest choice? If not what would you recommend?
<Tank bred would be fine here... though again, smaller tropical species also tank bred would be better, e.g. H. reidi>
3. What would be the best plant choice for the recommended horses to "anchor" to and keep given the Biocube PC lighting and size?
<Plastic really... or a gorgonian skeleton>
4. If I go the angler route, are there any other suitable tankmates?
<Mmm, yes. Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/anglercompfaqs.htm
again, depends on the species of Angler...>
I'd like to have one other "swimmer" but completely understand the size requirements and appetite for same size fish the angler has.
5. How long can anglers live in a tank this size (or any size) given good water conditions since seahorses are typically a few years at best?
<About the same likely>
Thanks in advance for you always honest and well respected opinions and help!
<A pleasure. Bob Fenner>
Re: Biocube 29. Seahorses or Angler?   5/18/11

Many thanks for the lightning fast reply. I have read, and actually just reread, the Angler compatibility FAQs. I'm still having trouble determining a suitable tankmate, though I did see that a snowflake eel can be suitable.
It's hard for me to envision a predator tank essentially and not consider lions, triggers, and puffers, as I realize they will outgrow this size.
<And too likely bite the Angler, starve it for food>
Sorry for the follow up questions, but once again I do respect and appreciate your advice!
1. A Snowflake would outgrow the 29 as well correct?
<In time, yes>
I have never raised an eel, and do find them interesting despite, though they are not the same, I hate snakes!
2. Given the confines of a 29 cube, do you have any recommendations for an Angler tankmate that would not be consumed?
It would most likely be a Wartskin, unless again you have a better recommendation.
Clayton Jones
<If you got the Wartskin at the usual 2-3" overall length typically available size... a Gramma or Pseudochromid of greater length would likely be fine here... B>

Re: Frogfish and cleaning crew 11/21/08 Thanks again for all your help, when all is said and done I think this will be a pretty neat tank as well. I have what I believe to be a very reputable LFS, they specialize only in saltwater aquariums and the owner is very forward about how people have there tank set up and what type of residents are in it. So much in fact that I have seen him refuse to sell a fish to someone because they did not have the proper set up, needless to say I kept my mouth shut about my trigger in a 30 to avoid the wrath! In your opinion, what would be the best way to obtain this frogfish, my original plan was to have the LFS order it in, that way they would watch it for a while to be sure it was healthy. Also, it there some sort of catching technique or area that has better quality specimens? I guess I'm really asking, if you were buying one, how would you go about it? Thanks. Chris <Word on the "street" is that a store called "The Shark Reef" is one of the best places to get them: http://www.thesharkreef.net/ BUT... if you trust your LFS, this is probably the best, most convenient route to go. Because, as you noted, they can hold the fish for you and you can watch it for awhile before you take it home. Best, Sara M.>

Frogfishes / anglerfishes... Sel., beh., hlth. gen.  -11/18/07 Hi people - <Rachel> I was reading over your Q&A page for frogfishes (aka anglerfishes, but this common name is usually reserved for the entire order, Lophiiformes). <Ahh! Yes> I think your website is wonderful and a joy to read. If I may, I would just like to comment a little on the Q&A for frogfishes. <Please do> The inside of the mouth of a frogfish is quite varied; it can be the normal pale color you might expect, or the tissue could be differently colored and look like algae (many times black and white!) - all part of the fish's camouflage <And lure strategy> (can't have that prey item scared away at the gaping mouth of the frogfish, since they rarely close it all the way in order to keep water circulating over their gills). Lumpy frogfish - consider that A. maculatus (the clown or Wartskin frogfish) is, well, many times warty. So if your readers have purchased A. maculatus and are perplexed by its cancerous tumors filled with skin parasites, please assure them that this is perfectly natural. Another side note being that most frogfishes have a small bump on their lower lip right smack dab in the center. This shouldn't be abnormally huge (such as the size of a pea), but it is noticeable. It can also get pink and inflamed if they're constantly hitting up against the glass of the aquarium. <Well-stated> Air bubbles beneath the surface - this does seem to be a problem, albeit rare, in most frogfishes. I would venture to say that it is more common in the pygmy frogfishes (Antennatus - note that this is different from the genus Antennarius :) ) often collected from Hawaii. Hearing about gas bubbles problems in fishes that have been well-established in their tanks makes me wonder if they're more prone to the 'gas bubble disease' as it is called in sea horses. Most are rather shallow (<90m), but they aren't built to go up and down in the water column, and their natural habitat is hidden within the benthic fauna (exception being H. histrio...perhaps this is the reason why H. histrio does exceptionally well in the aquarium comparatively). <Interesting speculation. I agree> Air bladders - most genera in Antennariidae have air bladders, but some do not. The ones people are usually concerned with in the aquarium hobby do have them. <Although diminished in relative size> Swallowing water/air - I know it happens, but that fish has got to under quite a bit of stress/sick/dying. I've pulled frogfishes out of the water, clipped a tiny bit of one of their fins (DNA), and put them back in without ever having a frogfish do this to me. Hardy fish - for up to a year, generally (depending on the species...certainly not Antennatus, which is lucky to make it past 30 days). Many people can't get them past this point and there appears to be no apparent reason why currently. They are not known to be ich prone (except Antennatus), but if the tank or tankmates are infected you can probably bet it'll become infected as well. Frogfish 'yawn' from time to time - nobody knows why. <I do think this is very much "stress related"... see them "yawn" more the closer and longer they're approached underwater> When purchasing a frogfish - if your readers get anything from this message - avoid Antennatus at all costs. It's probably the cutest little one of all the frogfishes, but it has major issues with longevity in captivity, if it even makes it that far. Unfortunately, I've never seen a frogfish labeled as anything but Antennarius, since it's the most common, so if you're going to purchase one try to identify it at least to genus. Antennarius and Lophiocharon are pretty much the only genera you're going to find in the U.S. that are suitable for aquariums. Cheers <Thank you very much for this valuable input. Will post/share. Bob Fenner>

Re: Stonefish- S. Verrucosa, S. Horrida 5/2/08 Dear Mr. Fenner, Thank you for the advice. I will contact the LFS you mentioned and try to obtain a stonefish. I will keep you all posted on the hunt. <Thank you for this> And if I do obtain one from the source you mentioned, please feel free to contact me whenever you're in the area and I will personally treat you to a nice dinner! Cheers- Al Eng <Oh! I'll be in the windy city for the IMAC (http://www.theimac.org/) do later this month into next! Hope to see you there. BobF>

Twinspot frogfish/ BRACKISH WATER (Antennarius biocellatus) I am looking for a couple of the rare creatures. Do you know where I might be able to purchase like 3 or 4 of these guys? Do you know if they live in brackish to freshwater their entire lives?  Please let me know if you know anybody that can get these. <Likely the big mail order etailers can get you these (if anyone can). MarineDepot, MarineCenter. Drs. Foster and Smith (.coms).  Oh, and can live in brackish continuously. See fishbase.org here: Twinspot Frogfish Bob Fenner>   

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