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FAQs on Wrasses of the Genera Hologymnosus & Hemigymnus

Related Articles: Hemigymnus & Hologymnosus Wrasses,

Related FAQs: Wrasses, Wrasse Selection, Wrasse Compatibility, Wrasse Feeding, Wrasse Diseases,

Hemigymnus fasciatus.

Hologymnosus Wrasse sp; comp. w/ corals        1/13/16
Dearest Bob & Crew,
Thank you so much for your passion for aquatics! Your help and guidance over the years has been amazing!
A friend has given me a Cigar Wrasse which I think may be Hologymnosus sp.
There is not a lot of info on these. He had it for about 2 years in which it had outgrown his 50g reef. I currently have it in my 155g reef. It appears to be reef-safe so far but is a rather rowdy fellow.
<Yes; though not as much so as Bird Wrasses or Rock Movers let's say>
It has taken out a few crabs and snails and takes a great liking to flipping over small rocks. It is obviously looking for food items and I have been quite impressed at how strong it is, flipping over several rocks that are 4-5" in size as well as an 6" Open brain coral, which I was forced to remove.
My question is that I would like to add some sand dwelling corals such as Fungia sp, and Scolymia sp. but I'm pretty sure that the wrasse will flip them upside down. Would you recommend gluing or epoxying these corals to rock or glass?
<I would definitely not do so>
My gut tells me no on these.
Thanks so much! Joe
<Likely the wrasse will leave any Fungiid or size alone on the substrate, and the Mussid I'd place on a flat area of a stone where it couldn't be easily dislodged. Cheers, Bob Fenner>

Fish ID    7/18/12
Hey Bob,
I hope that you're chilling somewhere sunny with a beer or three.  
Question:  any thoughts on hat this little bugger might be?  I'm assuming Halichoeres, but would appreciate any thought you may have.  It's 3/4" long.
<Wow! Small... I think this may be a juvenile Hemigymnus; perhaps H. melapterus...>
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Re: Fish ID, Hemigymnus  – 07/18/12
Thanks Bob!
<Welcome Chris. BobF>

Help with an ID 4/27/11
Hey Bob,
Hope that you are well. Could you help me with an ID? I originally thought it was a Bodianus, but am not too sure now.
Many thanks,
Help with an ID 4/28/11
Sorry Bob,
<No worries>
My system kept kicking the bloody file off of the email. Just double click the below.
Many thanks,
<Is Hologymnosus doliatus "Pastel Ring Wrasse" - a juvenile. BobF>

Re: Help with an ID 4/28/11
Many thanks Bob. Much appreciated!
<Mmm, welcome Chris! BobF>

Hologymnosus rhodonotus? 7/30/09
Hello all,
<Hi Eric>
After searching your site, fishbase.org, Reef Central; "Googling" and searching through several books, I have been unable to find the answer to my query. I'm hoping that one of you ladies or gentleman will be able to provide some information. I recently purchased a fish that I thought was a juvenile Hologymnosus doliatus, but after showing pictures to a few friends, I'm now fairly certain that I actually have a Hologymnosus rhodonotus. I'm assuming that the general care is similar.
<I would assume the same>
My question is: Does anyone know what this fish will look like as an adult?
<I do not... have never seen this fish above or below water... And did take a look, mostly at the widely reproduced copies of Jack Randall's pix there are about on the Net... have you seen the one on fishpix.kahaku.go.jp ? I think this is a terminal phase individual (male).>
I've found only 2 types of pictures so far. The first type is of its juvenile coloration and the second is of a mid-phase female. A pic would be wonderful, but a general description would suffice. Yes, it's fine for
you to spoil the surprise ;) I'm attempting to attach a picture of the fish I purchased, but am having difficulty so I've also given the link.
Thank you for any assistance you might render.
<Looks to be a very nice specimen. Bob Fenner>

Hologymnosus doliatus Growth Rate? 3.10.05
Dear Mr. Fenner, <Ryan helping you today!> About 3 months ago I became a first-time salt-water aquarium owner. Luckily, my friend who set it up knows what he's doing, so it appears to be healthy and thriving. Naturally, I've started hanging out at a local fish store, gazing longingly at all the interesting sea life. One day I noticed a big, striking fish in a stark tank. The label said "black and white striped wrasse." I thought the name odd, since the fish's stripes were more of a rust color - three of them running from his nose all the way to his tail. His lower half, the belly, was pure white. With a price tag of $69.95, he would clearly have been out of my league, except that the poor ol' boy was missing an eye. Being a native Texan, I'd heard more than enough stories about horse-tradin' to know that I had a shot at him after all! I politely asked the owner if he would consider cutting the price of the one-eyed fish to $20, and he readily granted my request. He told me that they had had him for a while, because nobody wanted a fish with one eye. Correction: ALMOST nobody. When I got him home, I went to the internet to find out what sort of fish he REALLY was, and although he was obviously a wrasse, he bore no resemblance to any I found with "striped" in its name. A mystery fish -- how exciting! I named my fish M.T., because he's so cool that he just had to have a cool, informal-sounding name. This 8 inch fish is a true delight. He's both comical and dramatic. He pulls sandy covers over himself to sleep; he sometimes stands on his head or leans against a rock while at rest; he ate my fire scallop; now and again he pokes his head out of the water; he's quite an eater; he frightens me by "playing dead"; he'll shake a piece of shrimp like a dog will shake a bone. I'm crazy about him! Recently, an interesting thing began to happen; my fish started changing color! His once snow-white belly began to darken. This spurred me back to the internet to, again, search out what sort of fish he is. Tonight I found your site and decided that my wonderful fish is Hologymnosus doliatus. <You have done a great job reversing the nutritional issues he was fighting!> I learned many facts about him -- about the color changes he'll go through, the size he might grow to be, what sort of food he prefers, etc., and now I'm worried. Apparently this fish is supposed to get big, but will languish if he isn't in a large enough aquarium. I can't afford to get a larger aquarium, and my fish is handicapped and can't be released back into nature. I'm just at a loss as to a solution! <Many new aquarists run into this predicament- The good news is that you've realized this early. You can post in local saltwater clubs, web pages, etc, about a free beauty like this to the right tank. Then, it's as if placing a foster child...You may even be able to trade him for something more size appropriate.> I was wondering if you can give me some sort of idea as to my fine fish's age. He's just begun to darken, and as I mentioned, he's about 8 inches long. I also welcome any advice you can give me about how to take care of a happy-go-lucky, one-eyed, Indo-Pacific wrasse who has found himself in the possession of a 52 year old elementary school teacher in the Gulf Coastal Plain of Texas! <Ha! He's on the younger side, as these fish are serious eaters who grow quickly. I'd guess a 12-18 months. An examination of his scales may lead to a better approximation. Good luck! Ryan>

Hologymnosus doliatus pt. 2 (3.15.05) Thanks to Ryan for the information about my adorable Hologymnosus doliatus. <Not a problem!> This fish has such a great personality that I wouldn't be surprised if he got his own TV show. In fact, that might be the answer to the housing problem I'm facing with him. If he were to begin earning an income, I could use the $$ to buy him a fittingly sizeable tank! Oh, and one last thing: M.T. is definitely a very handsome fellow, much more so than any of the Hologymnosus doliatus I've seen on the internet sites. He's available for pictures, but he doesn't sign autographs. <Ha! Everything in Texas is full of personality, it seems. Good luck! Ryan>

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